Broadway stars Amber Ruffin, Wayne Brady, Brian Moreland talk 'The Wiz'

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Wednesday, February 7, 2024
The Wiz is Back!
Here's what happened when we caught up with the star-studded cast of The Wiz.

SAN FRANCISCO -- Tony Award-winning musical "The Wiz" whisks audiences to the land of Oz - with a contemporary twist.

The show incorporates a rock, gospel, soul, and '70s funk-infused musical score to tell a tale of self-discovery: Dorothy's journey to find her place in a modern world.

ABC7's Reggie Aqui caught up with the star-studded cast of the traveling show. Lead producer Brian Moreland, Tony and Emmy-nominated TV host Amber Ruffin, and five-time Emmy Award-winner Wayne Brady, who stars as The Wiz, shared details of the groundbreaking musical.

"We would watch The Wiz all of the time, and we absolutely adored it," expressed Ruffin. "As your parents are sitting you down to watch The Wiz, they're also feeling like, 'See look here, look at this beautiful representation of yourself and your culture.'"

Brady added, "It wasn't until I was a little older that I realized what an amazing piece of work this was and that it would touch me forever."

Led by Moreland, the show's classic, 70's-inspired storyline has undergone significant development to resonate with all generations and more to come.

"When The Wiz came was already contemporary then, it was a show created of its actual time," said Moreland. "And so the challenge now is finding the show that can be created for this time."

He added, "Creating something that would be timeless, something that would move through the next generations of time."

"50 years from now, you can still put on this exact version that we put up 50 years ago," said Ruffin.

At the heart of the show is a message of self-realization, community, and perseverance in the face of adversity.

"I love the scarecrow because I love to see him at the end go, 'Okay, you're right, I do have it together and I can own that,'" said Brady.

"Glinda offers the most sage wisdom in the entire show to me," described Moreland. "To believe in yourself...if you believe in yourself, then you can make time stand still."

Don't miss your chance to witness The Wiz playing until February 11th at the Golden Gate Theatre in San Francisco.

For ticket information, visit here.