VALDOSTA – Dorothy Gale is having a hard time finding the Christmas spirit in Kansas. Maybe she will find it in Oz.

Or the Dosta Theatre.

Meagan Ritter, Bill Malone, Esther Miller and Tasha Conrad playing Dorothy, Uncle Henry, Toto and Auntie Em discuss not finding the Christmas spirit in the Sears catalog. They sing a song and Dorothy sets her and Toto's sights on a pair of ruby-red slippers to return to the Land of Oz.

"Christmas in the Land of Oz" is the Gingerbread Players of Theatre Guild Valdosta holiday production. Patti Cook Robertson, a long-time Main Stage Guild actor, director and producer, directs the children's show.

She said the original plan was to mix the production with children and adults in the roles; however, Malone and Conrad are the only adults in the cast. Robertson said more children than expected auditioned and she wanted to cast as many children as possible.

She also wanted to add music to playwright Tamara Tudor's script based on the characters and lands of L. Frank Baum. Audiences can expect to hear Christmas songs and other tunes. Lyrics to some songs are printed in the program so the audience can sing along.

In the show, Dorothy and her Kansas family face foreclosure on the farm. A situation that dims the Christmas spirit. Hoping to find the holiday spirit and help to save the family farm from Oz, she discovers a "Closed for Christmas" sign in the magical land.

"They all learn that the best way to celebrate Christmas is to share it with others," according to a show synopsis supplied by the Gingerbread Players.

The Guild hopes to share that spirit with audiences during the next two weekends.

THE CAST:  Ashanti Wills, Mackenzie Braswell, Baxa Campbell, Jayda Clay, Anna Cozart, Tanner Hager, Brecken Hicks, Madelyn James, Rebekah McGee, Charlee McGuire, Brookelynn Repsher, Anna Roney, Avery Thacker, Paisley Yarbrough, Tasha Conrad, Meagan Ritter, Esther Miller, Bill Malone, Laurana Layton, Michael Bishop, Dalton Bell, Brawdy Gupton, Mi-Rae Barajas, Sunny Lee.

SHOWTIME

Gingerbread Players of Theatre Guild Valdosta presents "Christmas in the Land of Oz."

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 6; 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 7, 8; 7:30 p.m., Dec. 13, 14; 3 p.m., Dec. 15.

Where: The Dosta Playhouse, 122 N. Ashley St.

More information: Visit theatreguildvaldosta.com or call (229) 24-STAGE.

NOTE: This story was altered to provide the full name of the show title and the correct playwright.

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