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The Wizard

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Wizardlondon
The Wizard
Biographical information
Gender

Male

Hair color

White

Born

Unknown
(of Irish ancestry, as stated in the novel)
(heard muttering "Kansas" under his breath as stated in the Grimmerie)

Relationships

Melena Thropp (lover)
Elphaba Thropp (daughter)
Liir (grandson)
Rain (great-granddaughter)

Title(s)

The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz
Ruler of Oz

Job

Fake Wizard
Ruler of Oz

Affiliation

Oz

Behind the scenes
First appearance

Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West (1995)

Last appearance

Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West (1995)

Portrayer

Joel Grey (original Boradway cast)

Oscar Zoroaster Diggs (aka The Wonderful Wizard of Oz) is a ruler who uses deceit and trickery to hide his own shortcomings. It is revealed that the Wizard is indeed behind some of the most horrific and disastrous events in the story, with one of his accomplices being Madame Morrible, although in the musical, he is portrayed with more sympathy. Glinda and Elphaba meet the Wizard of Oz in the Wizard's Chamber in his palace at the Emerald City. It is revealed later in the musical that he is Elphaba's father.

LifeEdit

In the NovelEdit

Maguire presents the Wizard as a con man and a hustler who happened onto a world where he could literally make himself into a king overnight. Pretending to have vast powers and all-encompassing knowledge, he rules over the Emerald City, while secretly requiring people with true magic talent such as Glinda and Elphaba to cast spells for him.

During the course of Maguire's novel and the subsequent Broadway production, it is revealed that the Wizard is
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Joel Grey as The Wizard OBC
indeed behind some of the most horrific and disastrous events in the story, with one of his cohorts being Madame Morrible. The Wizard is revealed the illegitimate father of Elphaba, seducing her mother with a magical green elixir, causing Elphaba's green tone. In the musical, this fact is revealed to the character Glinda, who accosts the Wizard with this information. It is also under the Wizard's direction that the Animals of Oz — most notably the Goat teacher from Shiz University, Doctor Dillamond — are caged and placed under strict control. This cruelty causes the final split between Elphaba and the Wizard, leading to her transformation into the Wicked Witch of the West.

In the MusicalEdit

After a day of sightseeing in the Emerald City, Elphaba and Glinda meet the Wizard. He immediately reveals his true self to them and invites Elphaba to join him as his personal assistant. He uses Madame Morrible, a woman whom Elphaba dearly trusts, to get Elphaba to join him. As a test, he asks that she give his Monkey servant, Chistery, the ability to fly using the Grimmerie, an ancient book of spells. Elphaba demonstrates her innate magical talent and successfully gives Chistery wings. After realizing that she's helping a fraud continue his fraudulance, Elphaba runs away, setting the stage for the show-stopping Defying Gravity .

SJBWonderful
Stephanie J. Block and David Garrison as Elphaba and The Wizard in the Original First National Tour
MousetalonAdded by Mousetalon
Wizard reveals an entire cage full of monkeys who now also have wings because of Elphaba's spell, 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 real power of his own, Elphaba runs away with the Grimmerie, pursued by the palace guards, after the wizard tries to convince Elphaba and Glinda to join him. Elphaba and Glinda run into the tallest tower, where they witness Morrible, revealed to be the Wizard's press secretary, declaring to all of Oz that Elphaba is a "Wicked Witch" who is not to be trusted .

Some time later, Elphaba returns to the Wizard's palace 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, running into Fiyero and taking him with her.

In recapitulation, it is revealed that the Wizard is actually Elphaba's father. Glinda orders the Wizard to leave Oz in his balloon, and indeed he does, returning to the world where he belongs.

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David Garrison as The Wizard-Original 1st Tour Cast

Book vs. Musical DifferencesEdit

No more than a con man with knowledge of how to work with human emotion and beliefs, this version of the Wizard works to maintain his own position and prestige, regardless of the pain and grief it causes to others, and is not beyond subversion or mandated murder.

The Wizard is portrayed in a slightly better light in the musical, Wicked. Instead of being very amoral, he is carried away by the belief of the people of Oz that he is "wonderful." In the play the Wizard is also more of a figurehead controlled by Madame Morrible and though he is responsible for some of the things that happen in the play he is truly not made fully aware of how his actions affect others. When he learns that Elphaba is his daughter, he expresses visible sorrow when he learns of her supposed death, agreeing with Glinda to leave Oz in his balloon.

In the musical, when he sang the reprise of 'I'm a Sentimental Man', it is revealed he always wanted to be a father, so the sorrow of Elphaba's death hits him more as he finds out he is actually her father, and thus in part, the cause of his own daughter's death.

SongsEdit

Wizardsh
Susan Hilferty's sketch of the Wizard's costume.

SolosEdit

Solos (In A Duet)Edit

Solos (In A Group Number)Edit

PortrayersEdit

Broadway ProductionEdit

Tom McGowan
Tom McGowan as The Wizard
  • Joel Grey (2003-2004)
  • George Hearn (2004-2005, 2006; temporary)
  • Ben Vereen (2005-2006)
  • Gene Weygandt (2005; temporary)
  • David Garrison (2006-2007)
  • Lenny Wolpe (2007-2008)
  • P.J. Benjamin (2008-2011)
  • Tom McGowan (2011-2012)
  • P.J. Benjamin (2012)
  • Adam Grupper (2012-2013)
  • Tom McGowan (2013-2014)
  • P.J. Benjamin (Current)

1st National TourEdit

  • David Garrison (2005-2006)
  • P.J. Benjamin (2006-2007)
  • Lee Wilkof (2007-2008)
  • Lenny Wolpe (2008-2009)
  • Richard Kline (2009-2011)
  • Mark Jacoby (2011-2012)
  • P.J. Benjamin (2012)
  • Tom McGowan (2012-2013)
  • John Davidson (2013-2014)
  • Tim Kazurinsky (Current) 

Chicago ProductionEdit

  • Gene Weygandt (2005-2007, 2008-2009)
  • Ben Vereen (2005; t/c)
  • Peter Kevoian (2007-2008)
  • David Garrison (2007; temporary)

London ProductionEdit

  • Nigel Planer (2006-2008)
  • Andy Mace (2008; temporary)
  • Desmond Barrit (2008-2009)
  • Sam Kelly (2009-2010)
  • Clive Carter (2010-2012)
  • Desmond Barrit (2012)
  • Keith Bartlett (2012-2013)
  • Sam Kelly (2013-2014)
  • Martyn Ellis (Current)

Los Angeles ProductionEdit

Stuttgart ProductionEdit

  • Carlo Lauber (2007-2010)

Melbourne ProductionEdit

  • Rob Guest OBE (2008)
  • Rodney Dobson (2008; temporary)
  • Bert Newton (2008-2009)

San Francisco ProductionEdit

2nd National TourEdit

  • Tom McGowan (2009)
  • Don Amendiola (2009-2011)
  • Tom McGowan (2011)
  • Don Amendolia (2011-2012)
  • Paul Kreppel (2012-2013)
  • Walker Jones (2013-2014)
  • Gene Weygandt (Current)
  • Peter C. Ermides (Current u/s)

Auckland, New ZealandEdit

  • Jay Laga'aia

Sydney ProductionEdit

  • Bert Newton (2009-2010)

Oberhausen ProductionEdit

  • Carlo Lauber (2010-2011)

Asian Tour Edit

  • Bert Newton (2011-2012)
  • Glen Hogstrom (2012-Present)

Scheveningen ProductionEdit

  • Bill van Dijk (2011-2013)

Scheveningen UnderstudiesEdit

  • Jochem Feste Roozemond (2011-2013)
  • John ter Riet (2011-2013)

Mexico City Edit

  • Paco Morales (original)

External LinksEdit

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