The Wizard of Oz hits the BHS drama stage, draws crowd

Published 1:09 pm Wednesday, May 19, 2021

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While audiences may not have seen lions and tigers and bears, they were treated to flying monkeys, witches, and only one, very cowardly lion. The Bainbridge High School Drama team wrapped up their performance of “The Wizard of Oz” on Saturday afternoon, culminating their three days of performing.

“Roughly, I would say we had about 150 attend each show,” drama teacher Leigh Powell told the paper. “And then, during the school day on Friday, we had three showings for elementary and middle school students.”

This play is something that has been in the works for months, with auditions beginning in March.

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“Auditions are normally a two day process, where I’ll have certain students read for certain things,” Powell said. “Normally I have them all sing, but since we just finished our one-act play performance, I kind of knew the singers that we had, and we had a ton of new singers that, you know, I didn’t want to scare them off by having them do a singing audition.”

The play had a host of props built for it, ranging from a tornado to a hot air balloon, some built by the drama club, while others had been constructed for prom.

“The kids worked really hard to do a lot of painting and set decorating. And my husband helped build some stuff,” she said. “Mr. Poppell and I built stuff. We also had a lot of help from Kaycee and Grayson Flowers of Bainbridge. They helped us specifically with the hot air balloon… And then we also got a lot of props and set pieces from Gina Burke, who is our lead teacher at the high school. She organizes prom, and the prom theme this year was ‘Wizard of Oz.’”

BHS Drama had to acquire the rights to the play from Concord Theatricals. The funds raised from the play will go on to fund future productions and workshops, as well as provide scholarships for graduating seniors. While the final number is yet to be calculated, $3,500 have been raised so far.

“This was my first class of four-year seniors,” Powell said. “So I started whenever they were freshmen, and so it was great to see the seniors that were in the main roles, how much they’ve progressed throughout the four years they’ve been here.”