Yellow brick road leads straight to Lakeland

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 2, 2005

Amy Latta just can’t wait to terrify her Lakeland classmates.

&uot;I like her because she’s evil,&uot; Latta says of playing the green-faced, broom-riding, Dorothy-despising Wicked Witch of the West in the Cavaliers’ production of &uot;The Wizard of Oz,&uot; which begins at 7 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday (the local elementary schools will be given a special showing Thursday morning).

&uot;You cannot overdo the Witch,&uot; Latta says. &uot;It’s not possible. She’s so dramatic. It looks hard, but it’s extremely easy to play. She’s one that definitely sticks out in your mind.&uot;

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Playing this part won’t be the first time Kristi Hall has been on stage; she performed with the Original Performers last year. But it’s the first time Hall’s shown her stuff on her host playhouse.

&uot;It’s awesome,&uot; said the sophomore, her red slippers sparkling. &uot;The movie scares me. It’s a little nerve-wracking, but its exhilarating.&uot;

Along the way down the yellow brick road, she’ll meet a Scarecrow (Ryan Key), a Tin Woman (Tiesha Swint) and a Cowardly Lion (Gwen Goforth).

&uot;It’s really easy for me to play the Scarecrow, because I act crazy in school,&uot; said Key. &uot;I used the movie as a guide to what the Scarecrow was like, and then put in my personality to make him someone I could relate to.&uot;

&uot;I’m used to playing divas,&uot; admits Swint, &uot;but this time I really have to go outside myself to get into this role.

&uot;It’s a little hard, but I get to add my little twist to it because I’m a female.&uot;

&uot;I love every second of it,&uot; Goforth says of playing the non-ferocious feline. &uot;It’s the fact that to me it’s so self-deprecating.

&uot;He’s so pathetic that he’s one of the ones you have to love. He’s the comic relief through the whole play.&uot;