When deciding on which show one should see on a first trip to London it’s easy, and somewhat necessary, to pick one of the classics. After all, they are the most seen and longest running shows for a reason. Works of art like Phantom of the opera or the Lion King.
However, after ten years of extreme success Wicked has proudly earned a place at the top. Having heard bits and pieces of the soundtrack and already being in love with the showstopper ’Defying Gravity’ my expectations were rather high. And yet I was not prepared for what the evening had in store for me.
From the moment I walked out of Victoria Station and saw those green lights taking over the entrance of the Apollo theatre I was mesmerized, ready to leave London behind and enter the emerald city.
Quirky Galinda (Glinda) is portrayed beautifully by Savannah Stevenson. Instantly adored by the younger audience I couldn't contain my smile when the little girl next to me eagerly mimicked the Glinda hairtoss. Kind, beautiful and misunderstood Elphaba was played by the talented Willemijn Werkaik, who has played ’Alphie’ in 4 different countries.
The story line, based on Gregory McGuire book, runs parallel to the classic ’The wizard of oz’ and focuses on important subject about what's really good and evil. It shows how Elphaba (The wicked which of the west) and Galinda (the good witch of the north) form an unlikely friendship and how they deal with opposing viewpoints, public opinions, their love for the same man and ultimately Elphabas fall.
Now, Wicked may be about witches and wizards and talking animals but the message it delivers is vital in this day and age. Every child should see this to soak in the lessons and their parents will sit beside them and be reminded of the magic and goodness the world possessed when they were kids. When the pillarstones of Wicked – friendship, honesty and how we treat one and other – was all that mattered. Then maybe even the most cynic, career-oriented, stressed adult might be – a tiny bit – changed for good.