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Cast Announced for THE WONDERFUL WINTER OF OZ: A HOLIDAY PANTO at the Laguna Playhouse

Laguna Playhouse and Lythgoe Family Panto invite you to take a new adventure to the enchanted land of Oz in their fantastically festive and fun production.

Cast Announced for THE WONDERFUL WINTER OF OZ: A HOLIDAY PANTO at the Laguna Playhouse

Laguna Playhouse and Lythgoe Family Panto have announced that Olivia Sanabia (Amazon's "Just Add Magic," Disney's "Coop and Cami Ask the World") will star as "Dorothy" and Barry Pearl ("Grease") will star as "The Wizard" in THE WONDERFUL WINTER OF OZ: A HOLIDAY PANTO, written by Kris Lythgoe, choreography by Mason Trueblood, musical direction by Andy Street and directed by Bonnie Lythgoe.

THE WONDERFUL WINTER OF OZ: A HOLIDAY PANTO will begin performances on Thursday, December 8 and run through Friday, December 30, 2022 at the Laguna Playhouse, 606 Laguna Canyon Road in Laguna Beach.

Laguna Playhouse and Lythgoe Family Panto invite you to take a new adventure to the enchanted land of Oz in their fantastically festive and fun production. Based on the British tradition of pantomime, where the audiences' participation is part of the show, expect a hilarious, heartwarming evening full of song, dance and holiday merriment!

The classic American tale gets a holiday makeover as Dorothy is spirited away by a blizzard on Christmas Eve and finds herself in a strange and wondrous land full of witches, munchkins and more! With beloved holiday tunes and a talented cast, you'll discover the magic of panto to enrich your holiday season!

Olivia Sanabia (Dorothy) is a 19 year-old, multi-hyphenate actress and singer. She is most well-known for her starring role as "Kelly Quinn" in Amazon's "Just Add Magic." She began acting at the age of 7 in musical theater and commercials. She then appeared on shows such as "This Is Us"," Sam & Cat," "Colin in Black & White," "Extant," and "Life in Pieces," among others. She recently starred in Disney Channel's "Coop and Cami Ask the World." Sanabia's love for singing, songwriting, and playing instruments is evident in her original music. Her recent singles include "Evergreen", "The Train", and "Stars Crossed". She can be seen in Netflix's upcoming spinoff "That 90's Show." Some of her philanthropic work includes advocating and fundraising for "Cookies For Kid's Cancer"- an organization that raises money for pediatric cancer research. After portraying "Snow White" in A Snow White Christmas with Lythgoe Family Panto in 2019, Olivia is elated to be back on stage at the Laguna Playhouse playing "Dorothy" this holiday season.

Barry Pearl (The Wizard) is best known for his portrayal of "Doody" in Paramount's iconic hit film, Grease and with kids as "Professor Tinkerputt" in Bedtime With Barney: Imagination Island and Barney's Big Surprise. Broadway: Bye Bye Birdie, Oliver!, A Teaspoon Every Four Hours, The Producers, Lenny's Back, Baby It's You!. Regional/Tours: Lend Me A Tenor for ICT, The Wizard Of Oz for TACFA, Breaking Up Is Hard To Do, Ragtime, Grease, Cheers Live On Stage, Twelve Angry Men, Hairspray, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Fiddler on the Roof, Happy Days: A New Musical. TV: "Grease Live!," "House," "Criminal Minds," "CPO Sharkey" (series regular "Mignone")", "Days Of Our Lives," "ER," "Baywatch," "Baywatch Hawaii". Film: Lifetime's The Walls Are Watching, The Silent Natural, My Favorite Martian, Avenging Angel and The Newest Pledge. Barry also produces, directs, and teaches film arts to the special needs community throughout the country with Joey Travolta's Inclusion Film Company. A graduate with a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University. Full casting will be announced shortly.

ABOUT THE CREATIVE TEAM

Bonnie Lythgoe (Director) With a career spanning more than 30 years, Bonnie's achievements as a dancer, choreographer, director, TV presenter, TV producer and Broadway producer are second to none. Starting her dancing career in the feature film "To Sir, With Love" starring Sidney Poitier, she followed up with a variety of choreography and directing roles including the world premiere of Robin Hood and Maid Marion: A Holiday Panto,Snow White, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Grease, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, The Full Monty, Cinderella, Peter Pan, Aladdin, West Side Story and Royal Variety for HRH Queen Elizabeth. With ongoing success in musical theatre, Bonnie served as a judge for a BBC singing reality series S Club Juniors created by Simon Fuller. She joined the next Simon Fuller venture, "American Idol," where she served as a producer on the first three series before moving on to another new project, "So You Think You Can Dance," for which she was both a judge and a producer for the first two series. Bonnie then headed Down Under for "So You Think You Can Dance Australia." In 2011, Bonnie created Lythgoe Family Productions in Los Angeles with her son Kristopher. Together they have brought musical "Panto" to Los Angeles. The first production was Cinderella, followed by Snow White with Neil Patrick Harris. Well-known for her creativity and involvement in global television hits, Bonnie is dedicated to bringing affordable theatre to families across the world through fun, laughter and music. www.ozpanto.com.

Mason Trueblood (Choreographer) was born and raised in Bakersfield, CA. He received his BFA in Dance Performances and his BA in Film & Media Studies from UCI. Mason has toured the world with the international revival of the Broadway hit Bring It On: The Musical and with The Muppet Show: LIVE. His credits include "DC's Legends of Tomorrow," "Dear White People," "Penny Dreadful: City of Angels," "Hairspray LIVE," "Glee," "2 Broke Girls," and several more. Laguna audiences know him for his choreography on including the world premiere of Robin Hood and Maid Marion: A Holiday Panto, and as "Pirate Lennon" in 2019's Peter Pan and Tinker Bell, A Pirate's Christmas.

ANDY STREET (Musical Direction) Television programs featuring his music are watched in over 100 countries throughout our world. His compositions, arrangements, and musical direction have won many major industry awards in England, Europe and the United States. He was the composer for "Madeline," for which he was honored with an Emmy in 2003. He has continued to be a prolific composer in the television genre, wrote all the music for "Strawberry Shortcake," "Angelina Ballerina," and recently a new NBC/Universal show, for children, called "Norman Picklestripes." In 2012, Andy became the associate Musical Director and arranger for "American Idol"on Fox. He also mentored many of the successful singers on that show. In October, 2017, he was hired as Musical Director for a new variety series, Last Laugh in Vegas, featuring many variety stars of the past few decades in an all-new format, complete with orchestra, dancing girls, and the legendary Las Vegas razzmatazz! Andy's first love, though, has always been the theatre. His latest musical, Doodle opened in January 2018 in London. It was written with his great friend and writing partner, Jonathan Kydd, and is a spoof on World War Two movies. This follows other productions, The Hard Boiled Egg and the Wasp, and 27 Santas and an Elf Called Kevin, also from the pens of Street and Kydd which were staged successfully in London and New York. He is currently working with Roger Avary (Pulp Fiction) on a new thriller musical set in London in the 18920s.

Lythgoe Family Panto produces fun, musical theatre the whole family can enjoy. Known for their creativity and involvement in television hits "American Idol" and "So You Think You Can Dance," the Lythgoes are dedicated to bringing affordable theatre to families across America. Based on the Grimm fairy tales and others, each story has been modernized with topical scripts for parents and well-known pop songs for kids. The Lythgoes pride themselves on creating a memorable experience a family can share together.

THE WONDERFUL WINTER OF OZ: A HOLIDAY PANTO marks Lythgoe Family Panto's seventh production at the historic Laguna Playhouse. Past Pantos at Laguna Playhouse include the world premiere of Robin Hood & Maid Marion: A Holiday Panto starring Michael James Ryan and Sohm Kapila, Peter Pan & Tinker Bell: A Pirates' Christmas, starring John O'Hurley, Lincoln Klauss and Ashley Argota; Beauty and the Beast: A Christmas Rose starring Ashley Argota and Thomas Hobson; Aladdin and His Winter Wish starring Kira Kosarin and Barry Pearl; Sleeping Beauty and her Winter Knight starring Cozi Zuehlsdorff and Joely Fisher & A Snow White Christmas starring Marina Sirtis and Lindsay Pearce. As part of the organization's ongoing commitment to develop theatre for young audiences, Lythgoe Family Panto together with Laguna Playhouse will bring the magic of Panto to hundreds of underserved children who attend school in Orange County.

THE WONDERFUL WINTER OF OZ: A HOLIDAY PANTO will preview on Thursday, December 8 at 7:00pm (with a press opening on Friday, December 9 at 7:00 pm) and run through Friday, December 30, 2022 at the Laguna Playhouse, 606 Laguna Canyon Road in Laguna Beach.

Tickets can be purchased online at www.lagunaplayhouse.com or by calling (949) 497-ARTS (2787). Group discounts are available by calling 949-497-2787 ext. 229. Prices subject to change.

The box office is open Tuesdays - Sundays: 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.; Mondays open two hours prior to show time until 15 minutes after curtain. Open until showtime on all performance days.



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