BWW Interview: DEE ROSCIOLI of WICKED DIVAS at Ridgefield Playhouse
On October 9, I had the pleasure of interviewing Broadway star Dee Roscioli, over the telephone. Dee Roscioli is believed to still hold America's all-time record for the most professional performances of the lead role of Elphaba in the musical Wicked, a role she played in New York, Chicago, and San Francisco, spanning more than a thousand total performances. On Saturday, November 2, 2019, she is scheduled to appear at the Ridgefield Playhouse, in Ridgefield, CT, in a Group5productions performance called WICKED DIVAS, performing with Alli Mauzey, who has played Glinda in Wicked, on Broadway.
Accompanied by a live three piece band, Dee Roscioli and Alli Mauzey are planning to perform numbers from Wicked, and additionally many other songs that particularly showcase their musical talents, including from Disney's Frozen, and songs made famous by Barbra Streisand, Tina Turner, Donna Summer, and others, spanning various genres of music.
Upon my asking, Dee shared with me that the process of having the green make-up applied and removed does not take as long as people may think, but is a rather quick process.
I asked her which is her favorite song to perform from Wicked, and she said that "The Wizard and I," is her favorite, because it is a song that reflects Elphaba feeling a sense of hope. "No Good Deed," is another of her favorites.
Talking about the character of Elphaba, known traditionally as the Wicked Witch of the West, this is a character who in Wicked is presented in a way that the audience is meant to see as having more dimensions, being more complex, and as a result, ultimately more likeable and relatable. Dee Roscioli never viewed Elphaba as evil, but as someone who like everyone else, is genuinely trying to do what she feels is right, at the time. While Elphaba at times can be a hot head who has a lot of passion and a fiery nature, her intentions are not wicked, even though she may later regret some of her choices. Dee shared also that we can connect with Elphaba on the grounds that, no matter who we are, if we are honest with ourselves, there are times and situations that may make us feel like outsiders, an emotion common to Elphaba. Dee also added that many of us have also found ourselves relating to Glinda and her attitudes.
I asked if there was anything specific that stood out among her numerous Wicked performances, and she mentioned that there was one show in which a fight broke out in the audience, during "As Long as You're Mine," yet they had to continue performing as if the fight was not happening, as the show must go on, and it did.
I am looking forward to seeing WICKED DIVAS, which is a touring show landing in Ridgefield, CT, at the Ridgefield Playhouse, at 7:30 PM on November 2, 2019. For tickets, you can call the box office at 203-438-5795, or go online to https://ridgefieldplayhouse.org/event/wicked-divas/.