Wicked Never Looked so Good!
|Also Known As||
Female/Originally Born With Male Parts In (Book)
Melena Thropp (Mother)
Elphaba Thropp of OzEdit
Elphaba Thropp is the green skinned protagonist in the popular book titled Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, by author Gregory Maguire published in 1995.
Elphaba is also the main character of the very successful Broadway Musical of the same name. Rather book or stage adaptation the story itself is a much more mature version of the first American Fairytale written; The Wizard of Oz, which combines many key elements from both the iconic 1939 movie by MGM and the original book titled The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, by children's author L. Frank Baum published in 1900. The story is not seen through the eyes of Baum's child protagonist, the Kansas farm girl known as Dorothy Gale (Who is neither the hero nor villain in this spin-off Oz tale.)
Instead everything that happens in the magical land of Oz revolves around Elphaba. The plot follows her life journey, focussing on her thoughts, trials, tribulations and eventual decent into Wickedness. Despite being the protagonist to the reader of the novel or viewer of the play, Elphaba eventually becomes viewed as the antagonist who rebels against the repression in Oz. Her strength to stand up for what she believes in leads to her being viewed by many people throughout Oz as "Wicked," thus, ultimately leading to her tragic demise. Despite her sad fate, Elphaba becomes known by many others as an underground legend and iconic activist for Animal rights in Oz long after her tragic death.
Author Gregory Maguire payed homage to Baum and formulated Elphaba's unique name out of L. Frank Baum's name, taking the phonetic pronunciation of his initials: hence, L.F.B became El-pha-ba.
The Orgins of Elphaba Thropp of OzEdit
"...she was up and running in an ungainly way, and her three goofy companions followed in a mounting panic. As the first few drops of rain fell, the Witch caught sight, not of the girl's face, but the shoes. Her sister's shoes! They sparkled, even in the darkening afternoon. They sparkled like yellow diamonds in the sun, embers of blood, and thorny stars..." -introduction to 'Wicked'.
Elphaba Thropp was originally a native Munchkin girl, who was born and raised in the Eastern Munchkin Country in the Land of Oz. Unlike any other Ozian, she was mysteriously born with green skin. In the Maguire's version of the land of Oz, not all Munchkins are short. Many in fact are normal looking individuals of average height.
Elphaba was born to Melena Thropp and her father was Melena's husband, Frexspar Thropp, a Unionist preacher. Later in the book it's stated that Elphaba's biological father was a traveling con artist that appeared as a homeless salesman who is hinted to be the Sociopathic Wizard of Oz right around the time he arrived to Oz via-hot air balloon, before he eventually overthrew King Pastoria and had him assassinated. Also, the King's baby daughter, the Princess Ozma, future Queen of Oz mysteriously dissapeared leaving no heir to the throne, thus leaving the Wizard in charge as he orders construction on the yellow brick road and Emerald City to begin as he proclaims himself as ruler.
However, decades before the Wizard's deluded power trip, and Dorothy Gale's unexpected arrival. Melena was filled with promiscuity. This resulted in the Wizard meeting Melena and seducing Melena with a mysterious green beverage known as "Miracle Elixar." They had a one night stand and Melena became pregnant while Frex was away.
It is also hinted that the drink Melena was given was the reason why Elphaba's skin is green, for whatever substance was in the bottle must have came from the Wizard's world which was fatal to any Ozian who consumed it. But no one would know this as the novel states that words and letters are written in a different format and design in Oz. People from the world where the Wizard and Dorothy come from (which is our/the readers world) cannot read or make out Oz's written language which is alien to the people who come to Oz and are not natives to its land. This is why it was so hard to read the Grimmerie book.
The House of ThroppEdit
The Thropp family lived in a Mansion and were rather wealthy yet not spoiled. Frex never found out that Melena cheated on him, yet Melena and Frex both fall in love with a family friend who is a native Quadling and professional glassblower by the name of Turtle Heart. This makes them both feel guilty, and sinful as Frex, who is a preacher is apparently bisexual. And both are just as guilty for Melenas' infidelity and Frex for his intimate feelings for another man despite claiming to be a man of the unnamed God. Years later as their lives progress, they gave birth to more children other than Elphaba.
Nessarose Thropp (later the Wicked Witch of the East), and Shell, the Emperor of Oz after the wizard's departure, are Elphaba's half siblings. Because of her noble ancestry, Elphaba bears the title of "Thropp Third Descending". Frex always favored Nessarose, Elphaba's younger half-sister over Elphaba, which is a source of constant resentment in Elphaba's life. Nessarose is seen to embody the qualities which the zealous Frex desires in a daughter, and which Elphaba lacks: Elphaba is a tomboy, does not care about her looks, and has no religious faith; in fact, she is an atheist. While Nessarose on the other hand is known as very beautiful despite her deformity, and is a girly girl who is almost ridiculously pious and is considered the closest thing to a living Saint.
Although both girls possess physical abnormalities (Nessarose who was born with no arms), possibly due to use of the pills her mother took during pregnancy to prevent her next born child from being born with green skin), Nessarose is considered beautiful despite being born without arms; she is very attractive nonetheless, whereas Elphaba is generally seen as freakishly ugly and even repulsive to some.
Shiz University & The Glassblown Slippers of OzEdit
As a young woman blossoming into adulthood, Elphaba attends Shiz University, and despite having been an outcast all her life she finally comes out of her shell and eventually seems to fit in. Elphaba forms an unlikely friendship with the rich and popular Galinda (later "Glinda"). She is a fairly beautiful and entitled young lady that is described as having blond hair that bounces in curled ringlet locks like stacks of golden coins. She is around Elphaba's age and came to Shiz from the country of the North Gillikus in Oz. Elphaba is the complete opposite and cannot relate to Galinda, as Galinda connot relate to her either.
Galinda comes off as a spoiled, snobby, vain, selfish, and shallow person. At first Galinda is repulsed and uncomfortable around the green girl but learns to look past Elphaba's flaws. Elphaba slowly grows to like Galinda and concludes that she isn't such an unpleasant roommate after all, one who is more crafty and gifted than she is credited for. Elphaba also meets her old playmate Boq, the Munchkin native whom she used to play with as an adolescent child. She forms a crush on the dark skinned and handsome prince Fiyero of the West, who attends the school. He later also falls in love with her despite already being married and having a family back home. They all become close friends for a long time and even attended an underground sex club in Oz while experimenting with other sheltered youths. Even the disabled and pampered, Narcissistic Nessarose later joins in with the gang of friends to be with Elphaba at Shiz and, in a sense, steals Elphaba's spotlight. Elphaba secretly feels like she is at Shiz just to take care of her sister, thus feeling even more resentment.
A proud Frex eventually sends Nessarose a special present as his way of rewarding Nessarose for attending school. The gift is a very unique pair of handcrafted slippers, a pair that will later cause just as much trouble as they are beautiful.
These authentic shoes are made of many sparkling jewels, gems, and handmade glass beads from the glassblower Turtle Heart, a close friend to the Thropp family. Each bead is painted delicately, and glossed over to give it shine, which also gives the slippers a chameleon effect as they change color depending on the lighting. The shoes can appear to be ruby, blue, or silver.
(Gregory Maguire combines elements from the 1939 film and paying homage to the 1900 book by Baum by making the slippers both ruby and silver and also throws in his own twist by making them appear blue at times.)
The shoes are described as "striking" by everyone who sees them on Nessarose's feet.
- Note that these slippers play a huge metaphor in the story. They are later magically enchanted by Glinda to enable Nessarose to walk without assistance and protect her from harm. While Nessarose gets all the attention as she shows off the new shoes to everyone, Elphaba simply loaths this yet pretends to be happy for her sister and acts as if she does not care that she didn't receive a gift from their father. However, toward the end of the novel when Dorothy Gale arrives and becomes the new owner of the shoes, Elphaba develops an unhealthy obsession for the shoes, as she sees them as a symbol of Frex's acceptance that she desperately craved in her life, and of her love/hate relationship with her sister. Elphaba also views the shoes as a cruel reminder of and metaphor for her father's favoritism with Nessarose as well as his neglect of Elphaba. The fact that Dorothy wears the shoes after her farmhouse landed on top of her sister adds insult to injury and fills Elphaba with guilt for not being a better sister.
While still attending the Shiz College, the group of close friends were all seemingly manipulated and their close bonds and friendship were deliberately sabotaged by the infamous Madame Morrible of Shiz. Madame Morrible secretly worked for the Wizard, participating in a dark conspiracy in Oz.
This era ended when Elphaba and Galinda went to the Emerald City to speak with the great Wizard who disappointed them, after which the two girls who were once best friends parted ways and grew apart. Galinda returns to Shiz but Elphaba, disgusted with the ever-more tyrannical and anti-Animal policies of the Wizard, drops out of Shiz and takes up residence in the Emerald City, where she joins an underground resistance movement against the Wizard and his laws.
Five years later, Elphaba is a fully grown woman with an astute personality. She lives independently and takes care of herself while living in a small forgotten and abandoned building in a rather isolated section of the city. The Emerald City has many magnificent palaces fit for royalty. And very fancy buildings, houses, shops and towers with glittering jeweled dome roofs set with sparkling emeralds. There also are many luxurious gardens with waterfountains made out of polished green marble and streets lined with clustered emeralds and attractive parks for it's residence to visit. But also there are many smaller sections of which are filled with poverty where drug dealers, prostitutes and thieves live. Elphaba makes a comfortable home in this ghetto area of the city and even took in a stray cat to keep her company.
One day Elphaba unexpectedly runs into her old love interest from college, Fiyero. The two realize they still have feelings for one another and begin an illicit love affair behind closed doors at Elphaba's secret lair.
Elphaba quickly falls in love with Fiyero as he falls in love with Elphaba as well. During the affair, Elphaba refuses to allow Fiyero to see her fully naked, so they make love strictly at night while in the dark with just enough light to make out each other's silhouettes. Eventually, Fiyero does see Elphaba naked, and notices a scar between her hips above the viginal and pubic area.
This is never explained, but several times in the novel it's hinted that Elphaba was born with male parts, therefore making her ppssibly a Hermaphrodite or Transgender as she was mistaken for a boy at birth and as a toddler. As Elphaba had short unkept hair and sharp spiked teeth, which eventually fell out and normal adult teeth grew in. In the introduction, her possibly hermaphroditic body is gossiped about between Dorothy Gale and her three oddball companions. After Elphaba fails to assassinate Madame Morrible as planned, Elphaba's lair is raided and poor Fiyero, who was waiting for his lover to return home is murdered to get back at Elphaba for trying to kill Morrible. The Gale Force (the Wizard's secret police) were responsible for Fiyero's brutal death. Elphaba comes home to find her apartment splattered in blood and Fiyeros' mutilated dead body on the floor.
Severely traumatized, Elphaba has a mental breakdown, looses her ability to speak aloud, and in a state of despair attempts suicide before lapsing into a deep coma lasting for a year. She is cared for in a mauntery (nunnery). Liir is apparently carried to term while Elphaba is in this state, and because of this Elphaba is uncertain as to whether or not she actually is the boy's mother since she has no recollection of delivering Liir. Maternity is never explicitly revealed in the book, but later as an adult Liir sires a child with green skin, suggesting that Elphaba is indeed his mother; Maguire has also described Liir as "Elphaba's son" in interviews.
Elphaba is middle-aged by now and following emergence from her coma, Elphaba spends one year recuperating and a further seven years tending the terminally ill in the Mauntery. During this period Elphaba also becomes a cleaning lady, scrubbing floors without getting wet. In the process she slowly begins to speak again. After this, she attempts to clear her guilty conscience by seeking forgiveness for the death of her beloved Fiyero from his wife, Sarima, who welcomes her and allows her to live at Fiyero's castle of Kiamo Ko along with Liir who is more like a sidekick or pet than a son to Elphaba. On the journey to Kiamo Ko, Elphaba encounters an orphaned snow monkey that she rescues and names Chistery. Though Elphaba had only intended to stay at Kiamo Ko until she received Sarima's forgiveness, Sarima refuses to listen to her story and she resigns herself to living in the castle indefinitely. Sarima also calls Elphaba 'Auntie,' although her children end up calling her Auntie Witch behind her back (Elphaba eventually gives in to this name even though she resents it initially). Lirr forms a crush on Sarama's daughter Nor. At nine years old, Nor is still immature, needing her mother to read her bedtime stories, sucking her thumb, and speaking with a lisp. When Elphaba arrives at Kiamo Ko, Nor thinks her a witch and affectionately refers to her as Auntie Witch. She bonds with Liir almost instantly and is apparently bullied by her older brother Manek, to the point that she becomes close to her other brother Irji to stand against him. She takes a liking to Elphaba's pet monkey, Chistery. After Manek is killed by a falling icicle, the other children strangely mature.
(It is hinted that Ephaba made the icicle magically fall after Manek, who secretly hated Liir for unknown reasons, left Liir in a abandoned well for days to basically die. Thus hinting Elphaba might have been telekinetic.)
While living at Kiamo Ko, Elphaba discovers the Grimmerie (a book containing vast magical knowledge) in the attic of the castle. Though Elphaba had originally considered sorcery to be nothing more than 'entertainment' and was not interested in studying the art, she had, however, taken a few correspondence courses in magic during her time living in the Emerald City. Using the limited amount of information that she could decipher from the cryptic book, Elphaba begins to practice sorcery with greater success than ever before. Eventually the Wizard’s forces came to Kiamo Ko (it is later revealed that they were looking for the Grimmerie).
The Matter of DorothyEdit
- Eventually Elphaba visits Munchkinland near the end of the fourth section of the book.
A little Alien girl by the name of Dorothy Gale of Kansas has unexpectedly made it to Oz and is also accompanied by a mangy pet dog she calls "Toto". Both came to Oz aloft in a descending farmhouse of foreign design that had been swept up in a cyclone from her world. The farmhouse falls out of the sky and ultimately crash lands in the heart of Munchkinland, and is dropped right on top of Nessarose, instantly killing her in the process. When Elphaba receives the news she arrives in Munchkinland and witnesses the tragic impact that the Alien girl has left on the Munchkinlanders (who are secretly glad Nessarose is dead, but are all shooken up by the incident nonetheless.) Elphaba arrives days after Dorothy has came and left. The only thing to be seen of her is the condemned farmhouse she arrived in. Thus, Dorothy is now following the yellow brick road, embarking on her own set of adventures in hopes of finding a way back to her homeland. Dorothy's adventures in Oz are told in the famous story of The Wizard of Oz.
But in the story of Wicked, it is here when Elphaba finally discovers the truth that the Quadling Turtle Heart may in fact have fathered Nessarose. Both Melena and Frex were in love with Turtle Heart creating a bisexual love triangle, so this makes sense as to why Nessarose always meant more to Frex than Elphaba did. Finding this out breaks Elphaba's heart. The story then shifts to the funeral arrangements that are made for Nessarose. Elphaba attends her sister's funeral, where she also sees a woman there at the service who's dressed in a ridiculous getup. The woman is wearing a pink glittering ball gown and matching crown and wand. As Elphaba looks closer she suddenly realizes it's none other than her old friend Galinda.
Galinda attends the service as well to pay her respects to her old college colleague. The two are at first very happy to be reunited after a decade with no contact. Galinda now goes by simply "Glinda" and is a well respected figure of Oz who has mastered the art of small magic and performs only good spells. She is also middle-aged now. The two woman make small talk but when Elphaba learns that Glinda has given Nessarose's slippers to Dorothy, she is enraged. Elphaba feels it was not Glinda's place to do such a thing and feels that Glinda has been disrespectful to not only Nessarose who is dead because of Dorothy, but also views Glinda's act as a thoughtless slap in the face to her grieving family as well.
(This has much more to do with Elphaba's guilty conscience than anything else.)
But it still sparks a fierce conflict between the two women as Glinda defends her motive stating that Nessa's shoes were falling apart before she enchanted them. Glinda tells Elphaba that she also gave Dorothy the shoes to help the child, giving her good luck and to ultimately keep her from any harm while on her journey, such as being possibly killed by the mob of angry Munchkinlanders who are on the verge of civil war.
This painful falling out remains unresolved and Glinda and Elphaba cut off all ties and never speak again.
Afterwards, Elphaba attempts to successfully hunt Dorothy Gale down to get the shoes. By this point, Dorothy has been in Oz for weeks now and Elphaba traces Dorothys' steps as she also follows the yellow brick road. Dorothy has been able to get a good head start but Elphabla is flying on her magic broom which is much faster than walking or skipping.
On her way she finds Boq's Munchkin house. Boq is now one of the wealthiest men in Munchkinland and is also a successful farmer with a family of his own. He reveals to Elphaba that Dorothy took shelter at Boq's home during her first night in Oz, spending the night at his residence. He even confesses to Elphaba how charming Dorothy was. Informing Elphaba that Dorothys' name means "Goddess of Gifts".
Infuriated, Elphaba disrespects Boq, to fly on her broomstick down the road without saying goodbye. Eventually, she finds Dorothy halfway to the Emerald City. To Elphaba's shock Dorothy is no dainty thing, but a good sized farm girl with strong forearms. As Elphaba spies on the girl she notices Dorothy is also accompanied by a mangy dog and the Scarecrow, Tin Woodman, and the Cowardly Lion. After eavesdropping and listening to the group gossip about her, Elphaba attempts to mug Dorothy and wrestle the shoes from her. Her plans are unsuccessful as it starts to rain and Elphaba is forced to take cover under a tree letting Dorothy get away.
Elphaba returns to Kiamo Ko and discovers the castle nearly abandoned with only Nanny, Chistery and Liir there. The Wizard and his soldiers have kidnapped Sarima and her sisters, and are eventually murdered along with Irik. Nor is kept as a sex slave for the Wizard and dangled in Elphaba's face to taunt her.
Later on, at the very end, Dorothy finally comes to Kiamo Ko with her companions and dog, looking for the Wicked Witch of the West to destroy her under the Wizard's command if she wanted to be sent back home. Elphaba has her flying monkeys capture the girl and she and Dorothy are finally confronted with eachother face to face. All while assuming she had to be tied into the tapestry of conspiracies in Oz. Dorothy tries to do what Elphaba commands but the shoes are enchanted under the protection of Glinda and will not come off. Dorothy confesses that the Wizard of Oz even tried to pry the shoes off but the pair have been stuck on her feet since her arrival in Oz. Despite Dorothy's efforts, the slippers simply will not come off her feet. She is magically locked tight inside of them.
As it became apparent, Elphaba breifly realizes that Dorothy really was an innocent human girl from a different place who had been thrown into a world that she knew nothing about. Meanwhile, hot sparks from a nearby fire suddenly caught on Elphaba's long clothing and cape so Dorothy tried to put out the fire with a bucket of water that was collecting rainwater from a leak. To help the Witch who was ablaze, Dorothy tossed the bucket at the Witch, but to Dorothy's horror it tragically melted Elphaba away, killing her by accident.
Gone But Not ForgottenEdit
This bucket splash connects to the fable of Saint Aelphaba, for whom Elphaba is named after, who was said to disappear beyond a waterfall, and never return. This in turn ties Elphaba to the stories Sarima tells her children about a wicked witch who disappears into a cave. At the end of the story, the children always ask if the witch ever comes out, to which Sarima replies "not yet". At the end of the book, this dialogue is repeated, suggesting that Elphaba will eventually rise again. Just before being absorbed into the Grimmerie in A Lion Among Men, the oracle known as Yackle also claims that "She's coming back-", although to whom this refers is never made explicitly clear. In interviews, Maguire has stated that a witch may die but will always come back, no matter what. This very well hints that Elphaba is the subject of Yackle's prophecy. Elphaba is vanquished at age 38 as stated in the chronological order from Out of Oz .
It is hinted in Maguires' Oz sequels that the spirit of Elphaba watches over her loved ones in Oz from time to time.
In the Musical Edit
Elphaba Thropp, the daughter of the governor of Munchkinland, who is ostracized for her electric-green skin, meets Galinda Upland and they take an immediate dislike and loathe for each other. She was born with green skin because her mother drank green elixir on the night Elphaba was conceived. In a moment of anger, trying to help her sister Nessarose, Elphaba reveals an innate magical talent, which impresses Madame Morrible, the "Head Shiztress" of Shiz; she notes that Elphaba's talents may be of use to the Wizard of Oz, and promises to ask him for an audience. Galinda and Elphaba, meanwhile, espouse their mutual loathing in a duet(what is this feeling).Elphaba meets Dr. Dillamond, the Goat that teaches History at Shiz. He confides in Elphaba that things in Oz are not what they seem to be; something is causing the Animals of Oz to lose their powers of speech and become animals(something bad).
Galinda, while preparing for a party arranged by a carefree student named Fiyero, discovers a black pointed hat in a box and gives it to Elphaba as a “present”; Elphaba arrives wearing the hat, only to be ridiculed. Defiant, she proceeds to dance alone and without musical accompaniment. Feeling guilty, Galinda joins her on the dance floor, marking the start of a new friendship between the two. After the dance, Galinda and Elphaba talk in their room; Galinda decides to give her new friend a makeover and to make her (Popular ).
The next day, Ozian officials take away Doctor Dillamond. The new history teacher arrives with a caged lion cub (who will turn out to be the Cowardly Lion) as the subject of an in-class experiment, revealing that Animals that are kept in cages never will learn how to speak. Outraged, Elphaba's magical abilities show themselves, and she and Fiyero are able to rescue the cub themselves. The two realize that they may have feelings for each other, but Fiyero leaves, embarrassed. Elphaba takes refuge under a bridge and states that it would be impossible for someone like Fiyero to have feelings for someone like her (I'm Not That Girl ). It begins to rain, and Madame Morrible finds her and announces that she has been granted an audience with the Wizard. Morrible stops the rain, in order to keep Elphaba from getting too wet, announcing that weather is her specialty. At the train station, Galinda and Fiyero see Elphaba off to the Emerald City. In an attempt to impress Fiyero, Galinda announces that she will change her name to "Glinda" in honor of Doctor Dillamond's persistent mispronunciation. Fiyero seems not to notice, focusing his attention instead on Elphaba, and Elphaba, feeling bad for Glinda, invites her along to see the Wizard.
After a day of sightseeing in the Emerald City, Elphaba and Glinda meet the Wizard. Eschewing the special effects that he employs for the benefit of most visitors, he invites Elphaba to join him. As a test, he asks that Elphaba give his monkey servant, Chistery, the ability to fly using the Grimmerie, an ancient book of spells. Elphaba demonstrates an innate understanding of the lost language, and successfully gives Chistery wings. Showing her how powerful she really is, the Wizard reveals a cage full of winged monkeys, and remarks that they will make good spies to report any subversive Animal activity. Realizing that she has been used and that the Wizard has no power of his own, Elphaba runs away with the Grimmerie, pursued by the palace guards.
Elphaba and Glinda run into the tallest tower, where they hear Madame Morrible declaring to all of Oz that Elphaba is a "Wicked Witch" and is to be distrusted. Elphaba enchants a broomstick to fly and tries to convince Glinda to join her in her cause, but Glinda cannot resist the call of popularity and refuses. Leaving Glinda behind, Elphaba flies off, promising to fight the Wizard with all of her power and Defy Gravity (Defying Gravity )
A few years pass, and Elphaba's exploits have earned her the title "The Wicked Witch of the West". Elphaba arrives at the governor's residence in Munchkinland seeking refuge; Nessarose, now the governess, criticizes Elphaba for not using her new-found powers to help her sister. Guilty, Elphaba enchants Nessarose's jeweled shoes, enabling her to walk. Boq, Nessarose's servant, is summoned and reveals that his affection for Nessarose was put on and his heart lies with Glinda. Furious, Nessarose miscasts a spell from the Grimmerie, accidentally causing Boq's heart to shrink. While Elphaba attempts to save him, Nessarose reflects on how her obsession with Boq has led her to oppress the Munchkins. Elphaba saves Boq by turning him into the Tin Woodman; horrified, Nessarose lays the blame with Elphaba.Elphaba returns to the Wizard's palace in order to free the rest of the winged monkeys. The Wizard attempts to regain her favor by agreeing to set them free. Upon discovering a now-speechless Doctor Dillamond among the monkeys, Elphaba rejects his offer and attempts to escape, but runs into Fiyero. Confirming his true love for Elphaba, he runs off with her.
Glinda, in a fit of jealousy, instructs Madame Morrible and the Wizard of Oz to spread a rumor about Elphaba's sister. They both agree a rumor is not enough, and once Glinda is gone, Madame Morrible decides a "change in the weather" would suffice.
In the middle of the woods, Elphaba and Fiyero profess their love for each other. They are interrupted when Elphaba hears strange noises and sees houses flying through the air. She leaves, and goes off to find her sister.She arrives in Munchkinland, to find Dorothy as the "Wizard of Oz," movie implies. Once Dorothy is gone, Glinda falls to her knees and places flowers near where Nessa had been crushed by the house. Elphaba appears, and soon finds out that Nessa's death was no accident. She and Glinda get into a fight, and the Gale Force guards intercede, grabbing Elphaba. Elphaba can't believe Glinda would use such a trick to capture her, and Fiyero arrives, telling the guards to "let the green girl go." They do, and Fiyero convinces Elphaba to leave without him. He is taken to a field, and it is implied he is beaten viciously.
Elphaba is in Kiamo Ko, Fiyero's castle, and she searches frantically through the Grimmerie trying to find a spell to help save Fiyero. She reflects on all of her past actions, and on how they have affected the people she has loved. She finally discovers that it is not worth trying to do good anymore and she is wicked
Glinda arrives at Elphaba's castle to persuade her to let Dorothy go, but Elphaba refuses. After receiving a note, she finally realizes what she has done wrong and how to fix it. She makes Glinda promise not to clear her name and to take charge in Oz, and the two confirm a true friendship. As the mob arrives at the castle, Dorothy runs in and throws a bucket of water on Elphaba, 'melting' her.
Fiyero, whom Elphaba had accidentally turned into the Scarecrow when trying to save him, opens a trapdoor in Elphaba's castle. Elphaba, very much alive, emerges and the two are happily reunited, and leave Oz forever.
Book to Musical DifferencesEdit
In the musical Wicked, Elphaba is less cynical, more likable, and far more sympathetic than the novelcounterpart. In the book, Elphaba virtually goes mad, and genuinely becomes "wicked", though understandably so; however in the musical, she tries not to hurt anyone and just wants to help the Animals and the people she cares about. Liir, Sarima and her children are not present in the musical, instead, a love triangle with Fiyero, Elphaba and Glinda is formed. The young Elphaba shows interest in sorcery as soon as her powers are revealed, as opposed to having it thrust upon her as in the book. Elphaba is explicitly shown to survive at the end, and goes to live a life beyond Oz with Fiyero, where in the book her impending resurrection is only hinted. Elphaba is also the creator of the Tin Woodman (through a spell to save Boq, who had had his heart shrunken to apparent non-existence by Nessarose), the Scarecrow (through a spell with which she attempts to save Fiyero from being tortured to death on her account) and the Cowardly Lion (the Lion Cub she rescued from the class after Doctor Dillamond's removal); in the book the first is a result of an axe bewitched by Nessarose, and the scarecrow's existence has nothing to do with Fiyero, other than her slight suspicion that he might indeed be her love coming back to find her, which just proves to be a paranoid delusion. Elphaba also has a less significant vendetta with Madame Morrible in the musical than in the book: In the novel, Elphaba relentlessly attempts to kill Morrible, but in the musical, Elphaba has virtually nothing to do with her after the conclusion of the first act. Her relationship with Glinda (called "Galinda" until she renames herself in the latter part of the first act in honor of Doctor Dillamond) is a central feature of the musical. As in the novel, the two initially despise each other, but eventually develop a strong friendship. For a while, Elphaba goes along with Glinda's attempts to make her popular, but her rebellious and revolutionary nature ultimately forces her to reject both social and political popularity in favor of doing what she knows to be right in fighting to save the Animals. Just prior to Elphaba's supposed melting, the two confess that each has been changed by their friendship: Elphaba admits that Glinda was the only friend she ever had, and Glinda replies that Elphaba was the only friend she has ever had who really mattered.
Elphaba demonstrates a natural talent in the field of sorcery early in the musical, and is selected by Madame Morrible to be tutored personally. She progresses quickly, and is eventually called before the Wizard of Oz himself, with a view to becoming his "magic Grand Vizier". However, when she learns that the Wizard is in fact a powerless fraud, Elphaba steals the Grimmerie from him and sets herself up as a rebel. In retaliation, the Wizard has Madame Morrible spread the rumor that Elphaba is a "Wicked Witch", to turn the public against her. She becomes the subject of national hatred thereafter, and her attempts to convince the people as to the Wizard's corrupt rule are regarded as slander. As more and more of her friends turn against her, Elphaba gradually comes to accept her reputation as a villain, and the supposed death of Fiyero is what finally causes her to embrace it completely. However, when she realizes that Fiyero has in fact survived, Elphaba acknowledges the mistakes she has made in her life, and decides to get a fresh start outside of Oz.
In the musical, Elphaba's aversion to water is no more than one of several ridiculous rumors started by those who fear her. Elphaba uses this to her advantage by disappearing when Dorothy throws a bucket of water at her, fooling everyone into believing she has been killed, even though she just went down a trapdoor and lives to the end.
Solos (In A Duet)Edit
- The Wizard and I (Madame Morrible)
- Something Bad (Dr. Dillamond)
- Wonderful (The Wizard)
- As Long As You're Mine (Fiyero)
- For Good (Glinda)
Solos (In A Group Number)Edit
- What Is This Feeling? (Glinda and Students of Shiz)
- Dancing Through Life (Fiyero, Glinda, Boq, Nessarose, and Students of Shiz)
- One Short Day (Glinda and Citizens of the Emerald City)
- Defying Gravity (Glinda and Company)
- The Wicked Witch of the East (Nessarose and Boq)
- Finale (Glinda and Company)
- Dear Old Shiz (Glinda and Shiz Students)
- The idea for Elphaba's Act 2 dress was as if she was from the center of the Earth.
- The fabric for Elphaba’s Wicked Witch bodice is not actually one fabric. It is as many as 20 different fabrics, cut into pieces no bigger than 3” and quilted, cut, stitched, and quilted together.
- The ruffles in the skirt of Elphaba’s Wicked Witch dress require 40 yards of fabric to complete.
- It takes one person 2 weeks to sew the entire Act 2 dress together.
- The Act 2 dress is said to weigh around 25 lbs.
- The Act 2 dress is worth anywhere from $10,000 to $20,000.
- The Act 2 dress has a zipper down the back that can be easily replaced.
- There are 20 shades of Elphaba green skin (although the production only regularly use a few).
- It usually takes about half an hour (depending on actress experience) for Elphaba to “greenify” every night.
- The most famous actress to portray Elphaba is Idina Menzel.
- There are two almost identical dresses, one's the Shiz dress; the other is tighter for the party at the Ozdust.
- In the musical, the wig for the second act is different from the first. It's longer with dark red or brown in it (it really depends on where the show is taking place).
- On matinee days (days where there are two shows) the actress who plays Elphaba has to de-greenify herself in-between shows because between acts the green skin becomes more defined.
- The fastest time for applying Elphaba's green make up was 7 minutes.
- Idina Menzel returned to the role of Elphaba in the original West End cast in 2006
- Most actresses playing Elphaba are mostly mezzo-sopranos ( a soprano in a lower range or an alto in a higher range)
- Danna Paola in the Mexican production is the youngest actress to play Elphaba at 18 years old.
- Idina Menzel won the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Lead Role (Musical) for her role as Elphaba in 2004
- Idina Menzel was the original actress to play the role of Elphaba.
- Stephanie J. Block read for Elphaba in the workshops for Wicked.
List of PortrayersEdit
- Idina Menzel (2003-2005)
- Shoshana Bean (2005-2006)
- Eden Espinosa (2006)
- Ana Gasteyer (2006-2007)
- Julia Murney (2007)
- Stephanie J Block (2007-2008)
- Kerry Ellis (2008)
- Marcie Dodd (2008-2009)
- Nicole Parker (2009)
- Dee Roscioli (2009-2010)
- Mandy Gonzalez (2010-2011)
- Teal Wicks (2011)
- Jackie Burns (2011-2013)
- Willemijn Verkaik (2013)
- Lindsay Mendez (2013-2014)
- Christine Dwyer (Current)
- Eden Espinosa (2003-2004; also Nessarose u/s)
- Shoshana Bean (2004-2005; also Nessarose u/s)
- Saycon Sengbloh (2005-2007)
- Lisa Brescia (2007-2008)
- Julie Reiber (2008-2009)
- Jennifer DiNoia (2009-2011; temporary 2012)
- Donna Vivino (August 2011-October 2012; November 2012-November 2013)
- Carla Stickler (November 2013; temporary)
- Christine Dwyer (2013-2014)
- Anne Brummel (Current)
- Kristy Cates
- Brandi Chavonne Massey
- Caissie Levy
- Maria Eberline (temporary)
- Chelsea Krombach
- Stephanie Torns (2010-2011; June 2014-July 2014; August 2014)
- Caroline Bowman
- Jennifer DiNoia (temporary)
- Anna Eilinsfeld (temporary)
- Vicki Noon
- Carla Stickler (Current)
1st National TourEdit
- Stephanie J. Block (2005-2006)
- Kristy Cates (2005; temporary)
- Eden Espinosa (2005; temporary)
- Julia Murney (2006)
- Shoshana Bean (2006)
- Victoria Matlock (2007)
- Carmen Cusack (2007-2008)
- Donna Vivino (2008-2010)
- Jackie Burns (2010-2011)
- Dee Roscioli (2011)
- Mamie Parris (2011-2012)
- Nicole Parker (2012)
- Dee Roscioli (2012-2013)
- Alison Luff (2013-2014)
- Emma Hunton (Current)
1st National Tour StandbysEdit
- Victoria Matlock (2006)
- Coleen Sexton (2007)
- Donna Vivino (2007-2008)
- Merideth Kaye Clark (2008-2010)
- Marriand Torres (2010-2012)
- Carla Stickler (2012-2013; also u/s Nessarose)
- Laurel Harris (2013-2014; also u/s Nessarose)
- Emmy Raver-Lampman (Current)
1st National Tour UnderstudiesEdit
- Jenna Leigh Green (also Nessarose)
- Maria Eberline (also u/s Nessarose)
- Marcie Dodd (also u/s Nessarose)
- Merideth Kaye Clark
- Stephanie Torns
- Carla Stickler (also u/s Nessarose)
- Ashley Dawn Mortensen
- Shayla (Osborn) Beck (Current; also u/s Nessarose)
2nd National TourEdit
- Marcie Dodd (2009-2010)
- Vicki Noon (2010-2011)
- Anne Brummel (2011- April 2012)
- Christine Dwyer (May 2012-March 2013)
- Jennifer DiNoia (2013-2014)
- Laurel Harris (Current)
2nd National Tour StandbysEdit
- Carrie Manolakos (2009-2010)
- Anne Brummel (2010-2011)
- Christine Dwyer (2011)
- Stephanie Torns (2011-2012)
- Alyssa Fox (2012-Present)
- Lilli Cooper (Current; temporary)
2nd National Tour UnderstudiesEdit
- Natalie Weiss
- Anne Brummel
- Christine Dwyer
- Laurel Harris (also u/s Nessarose)
- Anna Eilinsfeld (2012-2013; also u/s Nessarose)
- Lilli Cooper
- Madeline Trumble (Current)
- Idina Menzel (2006-2007)
- Kerry Ellis (2007-2008, 2008-2009, current)
- Alexia Khadime (2008, 2009-2010)
- Rachel Tucker (2010-2012)
- Louise Dearman (2012-2013)
- Willemijn Verkaik (2013-2014)
- Nikki Davis-Jones (October 2014-)
West End StandbysEdit
- Kerry Ellis (2006)
- Shona White (2007)
- Cassidy Janson (2007-2008)
- Ashleigh Gray (2008-2010; temporary 2013)
- Nikki Davis-Jones (2010-2012)
- Hayley Gallivan (2012-2013)
- Emma Hatton (Current)
- Ashleigh Gray (additional standby March 3-March 22 2014)
West End UnderstudiesEdit
- Cassidy Janson (2006-2007; also u/s Nessarose)
- Ashleigh Gray (2007-2008)
- Shona White (emergency cover-2009)
- Sabrina Carter (2008-2010)
- Stevie Tate-Bauer (2010-2011; also u/s Nessarose)
- Jennifer Tierney (2011; also u/s Madame Morrible)
- Gemma Atkins (2011-2012; also u/s Nessarose)
- Michelle Pentecost (2011-2013))
- Katie Rowley Jones (2012-2013)
- Natalie McQueen (2013; 1st u/s)
- Jacqueline Hughes (2013-2014; 2nd u/s)
Japan Production Edit
- Hamada Megumi(Original)
- Higuchi Asami
- Imai Minori
- Kimura Chiaki
- Ebata Masae
- Miyahara Kei
- Nikki Davis-Jones
- Ashleigh Gray (September 2014-)
UK/Ireland Tour StandbyEdit
- Jemma Alexander
- Michelle Pentecost (temporary)
- Jacqueline Hughes (September 2014-)
UK/Ireland Tour UnderstudyEdit
- Zoë George (also 2nd cover Nessarose)
- Natasha Ferguson (also 1st cover Nessarose)
Australia/New Zealand TourEdit
- Jemma Rix
Australia/New Zealand Tour StandbyEdit
- Ali Calder
- Sophie Wright
- Lilli Cooper
Australia/New Zealand Tour UnderstudyEdit
- Sophie Wright
- Ana Cecilia Anzaldúa
- Danna Paola
Mexico City UnderstudiesEdit
- Edén Pintos
- Viviana Barrera
Seoul, South KoreaEdit
- Oak Joo Hyun
- Park Hye Na
- Kim Sun-Young
- Kim Ga Hee
Asian Tour Production Edit
- Jemma Rix (Original)
Asian Tour StandbysEdit
- Zoe (Gertz) Jarrett (Original)
- Jennifer DiNoia (May 2012-October 2012)
Asian Tour UnderstudiesEdit
- Gretel Scarlett (also u/s Nessarose)
Los Angeles ProductionEdit
Los Angeles StandbysEdit
- Julie Reiber (2007)
- Caissie Levy (2007)
- Teal Wicks (2008)
- Marcie Dodd (2008; also u/s Nessarose)
- Vicki Noon (2008-2009)
- Felicia Ricci ( 2010)
Los Angeles UnderstudiesEdit
- Courtney Corey
- Marcie Dodd (temporary; also Nessarose)
- Angel Reda (Final)
- Sabrina Weckerlin (2007-2008)
- Roberta Valentini (2008-2010)
- Melanie Gebhard (2010)
- Roberta Valentini
- Melanie Gebhard
- Maria Walter (Final)
- Amanda Harrison (2008-2009)
- Jemma Rix (2009; temporary)
- Jemma Rix (2008-2009)
- Carmen Cusack (2009; temporary)
- Patrice Tipoki
- Zoe Gertz (Final; also u/s Madame Morrible)
San Francisco ProductionEdit
San Francisco StandbysEdit
- Vicki Noon (2009-2010)
- Merideth Kaye Clark (2009; temporary)
- Dee Roscioli (2009; temporary)
- Carrie Manolakos (2010; temporary)
- Felicia Ricci (2010)
San Francisco UnderstudiesEdit
- Angel Reda
- Felicia Ricci
- Alyssa Fox (Final)
- Ana Gasteyer (2005-2006)
- Kristy Cates (2006)
- Dee Roscioli (2006-2008, 2008-2009)
- Lisa Brescia (2008)
- Courtney Corey
- Jennifer DiNoia (also u/s Nessarose)
- Dan'yelle Williamson
- Vicki Noon
- Anne Brummel (Final)
- Amanda Harrison (2009)
- Jemma Rix (2009; temporary)
- Jemma Rix / Pippa Grandison (2009-2010)
- Jemma Rix / Patrice Tipoki (2010)
- Jemma Rix (2009)
- Jennifer DiNoia (2009; temporary)
- Patrice Tipoki (2009-2010)
- Zoe Gertz (2009-2010; first understudy; also u/s Madame Morrible)
- Justine Puy (2010; second understudy)
Australian Tour ProductionEdit
- Jemma Rix (2011)
Australian Tour StandbyEdit
- Laura Bunting (2011)
Australian Tour UnderstudyEdit
- Zoe Jarrett (2011; also u/s Madame Morrible)
- Roberta Valentini (2010-2011)
- Anna Thorén (2011)
- Melanie Gebhard
- Willemijn Verkaik (2011-2013)
- Renée van Wegberg (2011-2013)
- Bettina Holwerda (2011-2012)
- Suzanne de Heij (2012-2013)
Helsinki City Theatre Production (non-replicated version)Edit
- Maria Ylipää (2010-2011)
- Raili Ruutu
- Maria Lucia Heiberg Rosenberg (2011)
- Christina Elisabeth Mørkøre (1st u/s)
- Caroline Glomnes Johansen (2nd u/s)
Tokyo Revival Edit
- Okamura Minami (Current)
Australia Revival Tour Edit
- Jemma Rix (2014-Present)
Australia Standby Edit
- Ali Calder (2014-Present)
Australia Understudy Edit
- Sophie Wright (2014-Present)