“Wicked” is the stunningly beautiful behind-the-scenes story about Elphaba and Glinda, the witches that Dorothy meets when she visits Oz.
It’s not often that a prequel sits so flawlessly with the story that it is meant to preface, but “Wicked” is a perfect puzzle piece to “The Wizard of Oz.” The story begins with the celebration of Dorothy’s house falling on the Wicked Witch of the East, flashes back to explain how Elphaba and Glinda’s friendship developed and fluctuated as Elphie struggled with her magic, and finally returns to the present-day when Elphaba desperately wants her sister’s ruby-red shoes back from Dorothy.
Funny punch lines will keep the audience laughing the whole way through, until Elphie and Glinda sing a beautiful ballad about friendship and suddenly everyone is tasting the salt of their tears. It’s a perfect balance.
“Wicked” does a wonderful job of alluding to Dorothy’s presence in the musical without actually putting her on the stage at all, and that’s a big part of the musical’s success; the point of the musical is to explain how the Wicked Witch of the West became as wicked and mean as she is.
The musical is brilliant in the way it progresses. The plot explains how the Cowardly Lion, Tinman, and Scarecrow end up in their respective situations, but the audience doesn’t see it coming. Their stories are creative, but this also puts a great twist on “The Wizard of Oz.”
If you’ve just seen the “Wizard of Oz,” you probably have a lot of sympathy for the lion, Tinman, and Scarecrow, and you probably have a deep hatred for the Wicked Witch. If this is you, I challenge you to see “Wicked” the next chance you get. Because you’ll have seen it, you will be changed for good — your point of view, that is.
Not everything is always what it seems, and there’s not always an easy explanation. There are two sides to every story, and “Wicked” paints a beautiful picture about how other people can affect someone else’s reputation.
“Wicked” is a musical with of amazing songs, stunning special effects, and an inspiring, eye-opening plot line that will leave you speechless.
I highly recommend getting the next available ticket, and then after one show, you’ll want to see it every time it comes to the Benedum.