Wicked is a musical with music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz and a book by Winnie Holzman. It is based on the Gregory Maguire novel Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West (1995), a parallel novel of the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz and L. Frank Baum's classic story The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1900). The musical is told from the perspective of the witches of the Land of Oz: Elphaba, the misunderstood girl with emerald-green skin, and Galinda, later Glinda, the beautiful, ambitious and popular blonde. Wicked tells the story in which these two unlikely friends grow to become the Wicked Witch of the West and the Good Witch of the North while struggling through opposing personalities and viewpoints, rivalry over the same love-interest, reactions to the Wizard's corrupt government, and, ultimately, Elphaba's public fall from grace. The plot begins before and continues after Dorothy's arrival from Kansas and includes references to locations, events, characters and situations from both the 1939 film and Baum's novel.
Produced by Universal Pictures in coalition with Marc Platt and David Stone, the Joe Mantello-directed and Wayne Cilento-choreographed original production of Wicked premiered on Broadway at the Gershwin Theatre in October 2003, after completing pre-Broadway SHN tryouts at San Francisco's Curran Theatre in May 2003. Its original stars included Idina Menzel as Elphaba, Kristin Chenoweth as Glinda, and Joel Grey as the Wizard. The success of the Broadway production has provoked the opening of five other North American productions, including two national tours, as well as a five-year strong West End production and several international productions in the likes of Japan, Germany and Australia.
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