Dancing down the Yellow Brick Road

The Wizard of Oz is one of the favourite children’s movies of all-time, according to movie database IMDB. As the film marks its 80th anniversary, The Algarveans Experimental Theatre brings this classic to the stage in Lagoa with the help of young local dancers.

The show runs November 21-23 but choreographer Shelley Danca has been working with her dance cast since the end of July. This is one of The Algarveans’ biggest shows in years, and it brings many dance numbers and familiar songs like “Ding Dong, the Witch is Dead” and “Merry Old Land of Oz” to the stage.

Shelley’s motto is “Everyone CAN dance”, and she and her cast of dancers show that it’s true.

“It is wonderful to see both children and adults develop their skills and confidence,” she says. Shelley brings an extensive professional background including tap, jazz and contemporary dance, and she currently teaches a range of dance classes for both children and adults in the Alvor and Portimão area. She has worked privately with several of the dancers involved in “The Wizard of Oz”.

“I love going to Shelley’s classes and also being in The Wizard of Oz,” says Alfonso Silva, age 10, of Portimão. “I love the dancing, singing and acting and it is my dream to be a performer when I grow up.”

Maddie Greene, age 12, and Ruby Cordwall, age 10, of Luz say: “We both love performing and are enjoying being part of our first big musical.”

Adult cast members are also enjoying the dance experience. Joanne Gallagher, a dancer in the show, says: “I recently started dance classes and love performing with Shelley, who is a fantastic choreographer and dancer. I have to say that I am now ‘stage-struck’ and am thoroughly enjoying being part of The Wizard of Oz!”

“The Wizard of Oz” will be performed in English at the 300-seat Carlos do Carmo Auditorium in Lagoa on November 21, 22 and 23 at 7.45pm, and there will be a 2pm matinee on November 23. Tickets at €10 are available at all Worten and Fnac stores as well as the Auditorium box office, or online at www.ticketline.pt
For all enquiries, visit www.algarveans.com