The Wizard of Oz, Dec 1986

Creative Team
Director / Choreographer – Peter Kennedy
Musical Director – William Cairns
Assistant Choreographer – Donna Watson

Cast
Dorothy – Angela Harding / Margaret Kelly
The Scarecrow – Barry Woods
The Tin Man – Bernard Mitchell
The Cowardly Lion – Joe O’Connor
The Wizard of Oz – Ivan McKenna
Aunt Em – Agnes McComb
Uncle Henry – Ivan McKenna
Mayor of the Munchkins – Mary McNally
A Munchkin farmer – Lucy McCullagh
Glinda, the Good Witch of the North – Margaret McGahan
Wicked Witch of the West – Winnie Briggs
Joe, a farmhand – Joe Downey
A Private – Joe Downey
Lord Growlie, 1st General – John Curran
Gloria, his daughter – Judith Watson
First Witch – Janet Hill
Second Witch – Agnes McComb
Tibia – Andrew Harding
Munchkin 1 – Emma McGrath
Munchkin 2 – Judith Hunter
Barrister – Lisa Kennedy
City Fathers – Maria Connolly, Sarah Loughran, Nuala McMahon
Coroner – Frances Loonan
A Lady of Oz – Therese Timoney

Chorus of Farmhands, Generals and Citizens of Oz
Wilma Bickerstaff, Christopher Connors, David Curran, Pat Devine, Peter Donnelly, Martin Dumphy, Ethna Harding, Sheila Kerr, Joanne Laverty, Marian Lynn, John NcCabe, Bernarda McElhone, Pauline McErlean, Bernadette McKeague, Gerard McKeague, Roseann McLarnon, Una McLarnon, John McLaverty, Andrew Morgan, Therese Timoney

The Munchkins
Aileen Curran, Hilary Devlin, Elizabeth Fearon, Karen Fulton, Elizabeth Harding, Stephen Harding, Siobhan Hawkins, Emma Hession, Aileen Kerr, Trudi Loughran, Lisa McIlroy, Catherine McKeever, Michael Monan, Margo Morris, Stella Morris, Rosemary O’Connor, Sinead Rocks, Maeve Savage, Sinead Savage, Sinead Treacy

Band
Piano – William Cairns
Drums – Jeffrey Cairns
Double Bass – George Newman

Production Team
Scenery Designer – Russell Caughey
Stage Manager – Larry White
Assistant Stage Manager – Paul Mullally
Lighting – Malachi Lowry
Special Effects & Props – Anne White
Wardrobe Mistress – Marie White
Wardrobe Assistants – Ethna Harding, June North
Make-up – Dorothy Bamford, John McGrillan, Jennifer Kells, Sharon Monan
Poster & Programme Design – Joe Downey
Publicity – Ivan McKenna, Judith Watson

They're off to see the Wizard

Angela Harding (L) and Margaret Kelly, who played Dorothy on alternate nights in The Wizard of Oz

Review from a local newspaper

Fortwilliam Musical Society followed the legendary Yellow Brick Road to the Arts Theatre with its production of The Wizard of Oz and it proved to be a journey to the rainbow’s end on opening night last night.

This North Belfast team showed they can do a happy Christmas show just as well as any of their big spring musicals.

Somehow director Peter Kennedy has gathered together a terrific team of young dancers and singers.

The dancing from the tots would put many an adult chorus to shame.

There are lots and lots of wonderful characters who have been enchanting the young and young at heart for more than 40 years since this magic show first took the road from Hollywood.

It would be worth going if only to hear Margaret McGahan’s Good Witch or to hiss and boo at Winnie Briggs’ Wicked Witch or to meet Barry Woods’ brainy Scarecrow, Bernard Mitchell’s heart-felt Tin Man or Joe O’Connor’s surprising brave Lion.

Angela Harding was a lovely Dorothy. (Margaret Kelly alternates in this role.)

But the magic of the evening is mostly down to Kennedy’s nifty choreography and direction.

The music from Billy Cairns and the enormous amount of work which must have been into this show by dozens and dozens of talented backstage people add to the special feel of the production.

The show has all the hallmarks of that most important ingredient of amateur theatre – wonderful team effort.

The following letter appeared in the Belfast Telegraph, written by a very satisfied customer.

As the mother of young children, I try to bring them to a show during the Christmas season.

Having been disappointed over the last couple of years with the quality of some shows and the very high prices charged, what a joy it was to attend Fortwilliam Musical Society’s production of The Wizard of Oz early in December.

It was pure magic from beginning to end. My children were completely absorbed all evening, as indeed I was myself.

The ear-splitting applause from an absolutely packed house was thoroughly deserved. Couple with the very reasonable prices charged, we were really delighted with this wonderful start to our Christmas time.

More of the same next year, please, Fortwilliam.

Mother, Glengormley


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