Wicked stars reflect on hit musical ahead of its 15th anniversary

·3 min read

One of the stars of West End musical Wicked has said it is “incredibly surreal and special” to be part of the hit stage show ahead of its 15th anniversary.

The musical tells the story of the witches Elphaba and Glinda in a prequel to The Wizard Of Oz.

The show, at London’s Apollo Victoria theatre, will mark its anniversary with a celebratory performance on Tuesday.

Laura Pick, who plays Elphaba, told the PA news agency: “It feels incredibly surreal and special to know that we’re a part of something that has been in the hearts of audience members for 15 years and people keep coming back to see it, I mean that’s how we’re here right now.

“So it just feels very, very special and a privilege to be a part of what’s going to be an amazing celebration.”

Sophie Evans, who plays Glinda, added: “15 years of a magical show, and we get to be the green and the pink girl and it’s just amazing.

“Even if people haven’t seen the show, and they are thinking about coming, I say please come because you won’t regret it, it is beautiful.”

The musical was shut down over the last 18 months due to coronavirus restrictions, finally reopening on September 15.

15th anniversary of Wicked
(Kirsty O’Connor/PA)

Evans said: “The first day of rehearsal was surreal because the cast at the moment is kind of a blend of old, new (and) current members.

“So to see each other, to be in the room together, singing songs together was just electric.

“The emotions were definitely there, we cried definitely, as soon as we started to sing.”

The show originally premiered on Broadway in 2003, with Idina Menzel and Kristin Chenoweth taking on the lead roles.

It launched a London production in 2006 and has since been seen by more than 10 million people.

The musical’s composer Stephen Schwartz told PA: “It’s wonderful to be celebrating the anniversary in the West End.

15th anniversary of Wicked
(Kirsty O’Connor/PA)

“I mean the West End, of course, has been symbolic of English language (and) theatre, when we on Broadway were in our little infancy still.

“So to be here, to have what is after all an American show have made the migration across the pond so successfully, and having spoken so fully to audiences here is a wonderfully gratifying feeling.”

Schwartz also confirmed that the show had strict Covid-19 protocols in place to ensure the safety of all those involved and said he was “hopefully now that theatre is back and that there aren’t going to be shutdowns again”.

He said: “I think it’s important to realise that the commercial Theatre in the West End is important to London.

“I understand that there is state support for the not-for-profit wing of the theatre and that’s great and very important, but the West End is part of the lifeblood of London and I think to adopt the sort of sink or swim attitude has been short-sighted and unfair.”

Schwartz added that if further restrictions were required, he hoped the “Government would take a cue from what has been done across the pond in America and realise that support is needed.”

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