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Omaha Magazine

Defying Expectations: Wicked Enchants Theater-Lovers

Apr 29, 2022 11:10AM ● By Daisy Hutzell-Rodman

Photo Contributed

Those traveling downtown this weekend might see a lot of green in the area. Nope, not money from Berkshire Hathaway shareholders (although there may be some of that as well). Theater-goers are showing their love for the musical Wicked, showing now through May 15, through a fashion parade of green clothing, green glitter, and silver shoes. (Yes, silver. The ruby slippers are an invention of MGM, as they would appear better against the yellow brick road in 1930s Technicolor.)

I have now seen Wicked three times. The storyline is appealing to many. Elphaba (known in the movie as the Wicked Witch of the West) was born green, and consequently constantly thought of as odd. Galinda, (later to become Glinda, the Good Witch of the North) on the other hand, is beautiful and popular and flounces around in glittery pastel dresses. 

Elphaba stands up for the animals, who are losing their voice and consequently being pushed lower in the social order. She is helpful to her sister, who is wheelchair bound, Elphaba is helpful to the lion, tin man, and scarecrow. Galinda, meanwhile, is manipulative and twists the plot to her liking. Eventually, Galinda loses what was important to her and the story that lost the Academy’s Best Picture award to Gone With The Wind blends with this reimagined tale of Oz.

It’s the story of two friends of very different backgrounds who become estranged through a series of life events. I’d rather watch the gothic Phantom of the Opera or the political Les Miserables and Hamilton, but it is fun to watch something so “Popular.”

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