Riverwatch Middle School in Cumming students perform musical ‘The Wizard of Oz’

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CUMMING, Ga. — Riverwatch Middle School presents the musical “The Wizard of Oz” with six shows from Nov. 6 through Nov. 9.

The drama department director, Miriam Reynolds, said the school has performed this musical before, but this time, the drama department chose the “young performer’s edition,” which she said suits the 96-member cast well.

“This one is more accessible and not as long,” Reynolds said. “It’s a great version and tells the story very beautifully.”

Reynolds said she double-cast the lead roles to allow more students to experience musical theater, and because so many auditioned.

Reynolds said this group of students has worked diligently for weeks outside of school hours to put together this performance that “they are going to knock out of the park.”

“I am really blessed to have such amazing kids,” Reynolds said. “They are so dedicated, and, for most of them, this is their first time on stage.”

For several Saturdays, Reynolds said she and several parent volunteers have created the 36-foot-wide by 5-foot-high stage with three levels that allows every child to be seen.

New this year, Riverwatch will use the scrim, a screen used for special effects that the Forsyth County Arts Alliance granted the school during the summer.

Reynolds said this award will be a permanent fixture at Lambert High School and will truly liven the ambiance of the musical.

Cast members will heighten the old tale with more than 200 costumes and a spirited number called the “Jitter Bug.”

“It’s a real splashy number,” Reynolds said. “It was not in the movie, but it sure is a show-stopper.”

The musical will be held at Lambert High School, 805 Nichols Road, starting Wednesday, Nov. 6 at 7 p.m. All performances will be held at 7 p.m. except on Saturday when the cast will perform three shows at noon, 3:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. For more information, visit www.rmsdrama.com.