When studio head Louis B. Mayer wanted to outshine Disney’s blockbuster Snow White, studio songwriter Arthur Freed suggested filming L. Frank Baum’s popular children’s story. Morristown author and entertainment historian John Kenrick uses fascinating production anecdotes and some rarely seen video clips to show how Freed and MGM’s unparalleled creative talents produced not just a hit film, but a beloved cinematic classic. How did that horse in Emerald City change its color? And who came up with the idea of those iconic ruby slippers?
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Our speaker: John Kenrick has worked in the theatre at every level from amateur to Broadway, and was personal assistant to six Tony Award-winning producers, including the team behind the original production of Rent. He has taught musical theatre at NYU’s Steinhardt School, The New School University, and Philadelphia’s University of the Arts. He’s appeared on NPR, The Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Newsday, as well as PBS, A&E’s Biography, BBC TV and The Travel Channel among others. He is the creator of the popular website Musicals101.com, and his books include “Musical Theatre: A History,” which just received a new 10th Anniversary edition. “John didn’t just make me laugh – he made me care.”