“The Other Side of Oz” to be produced in Montana in August

The poster that Backyard Theatre is using for THE OTHER SIDE OF OZ.

The poster that Backyard Theatre is using for THE OTHER SIDE OF OZ.

A few years ago, Kevin Jones of the Kevin Jones Performing Arts Studio asked me to write some Oz-related scenes for a theatre camp he was having. Conveniently, the Oz books are in the public domain (the movie isn’t, so things in the books can be adapted; things in the movie cannot be. All that is explained quite well here by the New Media Rights people.)

I ended up writing about two dozen pieces with Oz themes, with titles such as THE MORALLY AMBIGUOUS WITCH OF THE NORTH, featuring a witch who got written out of the story completely, and DOG CASES, in which the sheriff complains about how emotional animal incidents can be, and DOROTHY ON THE COUCH, in which Dorothy seeks psychiatric help about her ordeal. Kevin used some in his camps, and reported they went well. Since then, a few scenes have been performed here and there, such as THE TIN WOMAN, seen in this video.

I took the whole bunch and packaged them together as THE OTHER SIDE OF OZ. It’s not a true full-length play, since there’s not a single narrative running through it, although the running time would add up to a full evening of entertainment.

This week, I got word that Backyard Theatre in Billings, Montana will perform all or most of the pieces August 1-3.

If you count this as a full-length script, this would be the seventh full-length I’ve had produced.

The others would be:
* ON THE THIRTEENTH DAY OF CHRISTMAS, a Christmas comedy produced by Santiam High School in Oregon in December 2013.
* SWEETS TO THE SWEET, a female version of Hamlet produced by Gorilla Tango Theatre in Skokie, Illinois in September 2013.
* 57 HOURS IN THE HOUSE OF CULTURE, a dark re-telling of the Moscow theatre siege, produced in Virginia in 2012.
* RED MOON RISING IN THE EAST, a one-man play about the father of the Soviet space program, produced in Virginia, Wisconsin and Minnesota in 2009 and 2010.
* VIRGINIA’S REAL, produced in suburban Atlanta in 2006.
* JOSE AND MARIA, AN OLD STORY FOR NEW TIMES, a Christmas play produced in Virgina in 2004.

This could have been my eighth full-length production; KLAUS was scheduled for production in Virginia in 2012 but the theatre closed before the season started. Instead, it had this staged reading instead.

You can find my entire list of full-length scripts here.

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