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posted: 10/29/2013 2:52 PM

'The Wizard of Oz' comes to Central High School

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Daily Herald staff report

This weekend, take a trip down the yellow brick road with Central High School, which will stage its production of "The Wizard of Oz."

Performances are set for 7 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 31-Nov. 2 at the Burlington school's auditorium; tickets are $10 at the door.

The Daily Herald asked director Jeff Nesseth to tell us a little bit about the show.

Q. Why did you choose "The Wizard of Oz" as your fall play?

Jeff Nesseth. The Fine Arts Department chose to present a classic from the musical theater canon of shows. Also, the large cast requirements offered more opportunities for our students.

Q. About how many people (actors, directors, musicians, tech crew, volunteers, etc.) are involved with the production?

Nesseth. Approximately 130 students are involved in this production. We are proud to announce that we have students representing fifth through 12th grades in our production.

Q. What have been some of the challenges in putting together this production?

Nesseth. Challenges? Any particular production has its moments. We here at Central are just ecstatic to have so many talented students that are engaged and willing to rise to the occasion.

Q. What have been some of the most rewarding aspects of putting together this show? Is there anything that has surprised you?

Nesseth. Personally, inviting students to try something new, engaging their passion, and helping them inspire others is truly my greatest reward! I am continually surprised on a daily basis by the creativity within our cast.

Q. What do you think the audience will like best about this show?

Nesseth. The escape from reality that theater invites the audience to participate in. Hopefully, the familiar storyline will evoke a past memory and/or make new memories.

Q. What makes this show unique?

Nesseth. Several things. The set is simply astounding. CHS Tech Director, Jim Struyk, has once again expanded our minds with his spin on a traditional Broadway musical. The set pieces help the audience escape into the storyline.

Fifty fifth-through-eighth -graders are representing the Munchkins in Munchkinland; this is a true testament to the continued community support found in Central Unit District 301.

Q. Is there anything else you'd like to tell readers about this show?

Nesseth. Please come out and support theater! Unplug from the chaos that our lives create, and enjoy a theatrical experience.

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