Elements of Oz OFF-BROADWAY REVIEWS

Photo: Richard Termine
  • NY TIMES

  • Opening Night:
    September 26, 2015
    Closing:
    October 4, 2015

    Theater: Alexander Kasser Theater / 1 Normal Ave, Montclair, NJ, 07043

    Synopsis: 

    The endlessly inventive Builders Association, led by Marianne Weems, returns to Peak Performances with its lighthearted 21st century mash-up of the classic The Wizard of Oz, featuring YouTube fanatics, heavy metal, and a heartfelt recreation of the iconic film. As a bonus, for once, you can turn on your cell phone - the stage action will be enhanced by interactivity with viewers' smart phones, delivering the Technicolor Land of Oz of our imaginations.

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  • NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW OF Elements of Oz

    In ‘Elements of Oz,’ Smartphones Enhance a Celebration of ‘The Wizard of Oz’ Film

    Charles Isherwood

    September 28, 2015: “Next time I’ll bring one of my grandsons,” cracked a woman behind me at “Elements of Oz,” a technologically sophisticated new show from the Builders Association that riffs on the celebrated movie “The Wizard of Oz.” Good idea, I thought. Just don’t bring Patti LuPone. That estimable performer, as you may know, recently made news when she snatched a cellphone from a patron’s hand at a performance, in high dudgeon over that audience member’s constant texting. At “Elements of Oz,” having its premiere as part of the Peak Performances season at Montclair State University here, viewers are encouraged to use smartphones or tablets during the performance. These devices are not, of course, meant to be used for random texting and calling. You download a special app that instructs you to put your phone in airplane mode until the show starts. The app then provides access to various elements that enhance the production, primarily nifty filters that, when you point the phone at the stage, add new layers of imagery to the action. When Dorothy’s house in Kansas flies skyward, for example, you can hold up your phone and see a real corker of a tornado and slashing rain that isn’t apparent to the naked eye.

    READ THE REVIEW

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