, the prequel extravaganza to Dorothy's adventures in Oz, wowed the June 4 audience, many of whom were experiencing this event for the second, third or fourth time. Based on Gregory Maguire's 1995 much beloved book by the same name, Wicked
is a musical nod to a myriad of predecessors. Similar to making a patchwork quilt, Stephen Schwartz (music and lyrics), Winnie Holzman (book) and Joe Mantello (director) in concert with designers and arrangers ingeniously combined scraps from ancestral and contemporary "fabric" to create a unique work of art. Visually, Wicked
is both a wonder and a challenge. It does indeed take more than one viewing not only to "see it all" but to absorb the nuances and details. The play is stitched with aphorisms ("No good deed goes unpunished") and conjectures ("Are people born wicked?") as well as nods to Frank Baum's original text. While it warms the heart and eases the brain through glibness and familiarity, Wicked
also challenges common notions surrounding glamor and love and our heart's desire. It's a fast-moving spectacle with a fine cast. Through June 21; 1-800-982-2787, www.BroadwayAcrossAmerica.com.