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What a drama to find suitable venue

TAO LIN
Last updated 05:00 03/12/2013
Wizrd of Oz

SHOWTIME: Matthew Farnell, 13, production director Daryl Wrightson, Luke Orbell, 11, and Jordyn Clarkson, 12 are bringing the land of Oz to Papatoetoe despite having problems finding the right venue.

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It's been a nerve-racking wait but the Drama Factory is ready to take audiences on an adventure down the Yellow Brick Road.

Fifty kids aged between 5 and 16 are set to perform in the Manurewa theatre company's production of The Wizard of Oz.

But it took eight months to secure a venue.

Director Daryl Wrightson says there isn't a suitable theatre in Manurewa and many other theatres were booked out or could not confirm availability.

He says the group has used the venue at Nathan Homestead in the past but it needed somewhere bigger.

After a lengthy wait the group finally secured the Spotlight Theatre in Papatoetoe.

"It's all about the kids and creating an opportunity for them," he says.

The production stays true to the original show but the kids have "funked it up" a bit.

There are also "great special effects and fantastic costumes", he says.

Dorothy will be played by Jordyn Clarkson, who has been acting with the company for the past three years.

The 12-year-old Ararimu School student says there's been a lot to learn for the production, especially song lyrics.

But she's looking forward to getting up on stage and "doing all the movement and expressions".

Dorothy's dog Toto will be played by 11-year-old Luke Orbell.

Luke says he doesn't have many lines but is in almost every scene.

The Hill Park Primary School student started acting when he was 6 and is looking forward to the production. "This is one of the most exciting shows I've done," he says.

The Wizard of Oz is showing at the Spotlight Theatre in Papatoetoe from December 5 to 7. Tickets are $15 each. Call 0800 DRAMA NOW (0800 372 626) for more information or to book tickets.

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- Manukau Courier

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