Wednesday, 18 November 2009

New Andrew Llloyd Webber Oz Talent Search

This has been expected for some time, but it's now confirmed that ALW will be involved in a new BBC talent search show, this time to find a Dorothy for the Wizard of Oz. It will be interesting to see who the eventual choice to fill Rachel's ruby slippers will be.

In the meantime, here is a recent newspaper article:

Andrew Lloyd Webber has kicked off his search to find an actress to play Dorothy in his latest West End venture The Wizard Of Oz.

The musical impresario, who is in the early stages of prostate cancer, will use a televised talent show to find his leading lady, a role made famous by Judy Garland in the 1939 classic film.

And the search will come to Northern Ireland in early January when auditions will be held for the new BBC1 show Over The Rainbow.

A spokesman for programme makers Talkback Thames, which also produces the X Factor and Britain's Got Talent, said that in previous years Lloyd Webber had been impressed with the talent from here.

The BBC show I'd Do Anything saw three local people make the finals. Belfast girl Rachel Tucker and Bangor's Niamh Perry both battled it out for the role of Nancy in the West End musical, while Londonderry boy Gareth Borrow was a finalist in the search for Oliver.

Rachel and Niamh missed out on the Nancy part but the programme gave them a platform to launch their careers. Rachel won a role in the West End musical We Will Rock You and presents BBC NI's The Friday Show with Eamonn Holmes.

Niamh is starring in the West End's Mamma Mia and is to take on a role in Lloyd Webber's Phantom Of The Opera sequel Love Never Dies.

Gareth, meanwhile, lost out on the role of Oliver but landed a part in the same musical, playing one of the workhouse boys.

And the winner of the earlier show How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria? was won by Connie Fisher, who was born in Lisburn.

Lloyd Webber said: "Our previous musical talent searches have provided an incredible shot in the arm for musical theatre in Britain and I can't wait to work with the BBC again in the hunt for Dorothy."

Over The Rainbow will air next year and if you think you could be Dorothy apply now to audition by going to

All applicants must have been aged 16 or over by June 26 2009.

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