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Wizard of Oz’ comes to Henderson Pavilion

Show to star Green Valley High grad and feature actors from Opportunity Village

Map of Henderson Pavilion

Henderson Pavilion

200 South Green Valley Parkway, Henderson

Wizard of Oz Henderson Pavilion

A look at the Wizard of Oz performed by the Las Vegas Shakespeare Company at the Henderson Pavilion Friday, May 13, 2011. Launch slideshow »

Close your eyes and tap your ruby red slippers together three times: The Las Vegas Shakespeare Company will present multiple performances of "The Wizard of Oz" in Henderson starting Friday.

“'The Wizard of Oz' is a timeless movie that people of all ages love,” Andrea Primo, Henderson’s director of the cultural arts and tourism department, said in a statement. “We’re pleased to bring it to the stage for the community to enjoy.”

Henderson resident Carly Richardson will play the role of Dorothy Gale in the production, which is to be performed at the Henderson Pavilion, 200 S. Green Valley Parkway.

Richardson, a 2008 graduate of Green Valley High School, was selected out of 30 other Dorothy hopefuls for the chance to wear the ruby red shippers. It’s the second time Richardson has played the part – her first performance was as a freshman Southern Utah University.

“I’m excited to explore and develop the role of Dorothy again,” Richardson said in a statement. “It’s an honor to have the opportunity to play such a legendary role.”

Cheeto, a rescue dog from the Nevada Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, will play Dorothy’s sidekick, Toto. The 1-year-old terrier and Chihuahua mix was chosen by Richardson after a visit to the animal shelter with 'Oz' director Dan Decker.

“He’s the perfect pooch for the part,” Decker, director of the Las Vegas Shakespeare Company, said in a statement. “He’s sweet, calm and very intelligent. He already answers to Toto, too.”

Cheeto has been rehearing with the 51-member cast and orchestra for weeks, barking at the Wicked Witch of the West and running to Dorothy without direction or persuasion from others, Decker added.

The show will also star four individuals from Opportunity Village, an organization that serves people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The thespians were chosen from a group of 20 Opportunity Village clients to portray Winkies, the soldiers for the Wicked Witch of the West’s army.

The Las Vegas Shakespeare Company worked with Opportunity Village to provide theater workshops to the 20-member group from the Las Vegas organization.

“Creative arts are an essential part of living for many people, especially individuals with disabilities," Krysti Gabriel, Opportunity Village’s manager of the performing arts program said in a statement. “We wanted our clients to have the opportunity to thrive in a artistic field of their choice.”

Residents can catch the performances May 13 and 14 at 8 p.m., May 15 at 4 p.m., May 21 at 8 p.m. and May 22 at 4 p.m.

Tickets cost $10 and may be purchased through www.hendersonlive.com, by calling 702-267-4849 or by visiting the Henderson Pavilion Box office, Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

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