OSWEGO – This year’s Harborfest Children’s Musical, the beloved Classic “The Wizard of Oz,”continues a tradition of family entertainment that began with the creation of the festival in 1987.
The original concept as visualized by the founder of Harborfest the late Rosemary Nesbitt included historical re enactments, theatrical presentations, and tales to entertain children.
Family entertainment continued to be a large part of the celebration with the designation of Franklin Square as the children’s park and the creation of the Harborfest children’s parade, along with dozens of performances by nationally known children’s entertainers.
For the last several years the Harborfest Children’s Musical has become a popular feature in the festival’s schedule.
This year’s show will be produced by Oswego Children’s Theater under the sure direction Lyndsie Lee and Kenneth C. Jones assuming the stage and music leadership roles.
They have many years of experience directing children’s productions with several organizations including Oswego Children’s Theater, Oswego Players, Oswego Opera Theater, Whitney Point Schools, Westwood, Massacusetts Schools, and others.
Mr. Jones is the vocal music teacher at Whitney Point High School and Mrs. Jones is a NYS Certified Theater Educator.
This year’s production features a cast of about 60 young people ranging in age from 1 to 16 years that come from all over the area including Oswego, Fulton, Hanibal, Mexico, New Haven, Martville, West Monroe, Camden, and Johnson City.
The show is based on the book, by Central New York native L. Frank Baum, with music and lyrics by Harold Arlen and E. Y. Harburg, background music by Herbert Stothart and dance and vocal arrangements by Peter Howard.
This Young Performer’s Version of the show is based upon the Royal Shakespeare Company production adapted for stage by John Kane with orchestration by Larry Wilcox taken from the classic 1939 motion picture owned by Turner Entertainment Co. and distributed in all media by Warner Bros.
Adaptation and support materials for the Young Performers Edition of the show was developed by iTheatrics under the supervision of Timothy Allen McDonald.
The show is produced by special arrangement with Music Theater International.
The Wizard of Oz will presented several times during the festival weekend on the Children’s Stage at West Park.
To learn more about the Children’s Musical or Harborfest itself, contact the Harborfest offices at 41 Lake St., Oswego, NY 13126 or visit www.oswegoharborfest.com.