Crawford Signs Up For Lloyd Webber’s Wizard Of Oz

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September 24, 2010 | 8:50pm EST

Michael Crawford, the king of the musicals, is set for a West End return – in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Wizard Of Oz revamp.
The Phantom of the Opera and Barnum superstar will join the cast of the production when it opens in London next year, but he’s still unsure what part he’ll play opposite newcomer Danielle Hope, who won a TV talent contest to find the show’s new Dorothy.

Crawford says, “Andrew had the idea about my being involved… and then I heard about two months ago from him about it. At the time, I was away travelling around Europe with my family and when I got back about three weeks ago, I started having some initial meetings with Andrew and the creative team.

“I refreshed my memory and re-watched the movie… I’ll play one of the hopefully supportive and important sidekicks, who is also important to the story. I think that there are six roles all on the side of being equal in terms of performance – the two Witches, the Scarecrow, the Cowardly Lion, the Tin Man and of course the Wizard. They’re all important characters to support the story.”

Crawford and Lloyd Webber first worked together in 1986, when Crawford originated the title role in the composer’s Phantom of the Opera.