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Saturday, Apr. 30, 2016

Oz cast members learn to fly

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

"Flying Monkeys!" Dorothy (Katie Reed) exclaims, as she is approached by three such critters during a rehearsal for the Cherokee Community Theater's production of "Wizard of Oz." Photo by Dan Whitney
Several people in Cherokee have learned how to fly this week, and they were not taking piloting lessons at the airport.

Chip Christensen, a "flying director" from "Flying By Foy," a Las Vegas, Nevada-based organization which instructs and provides flying appartus for theatrical productions around the world, was in town Monday and Tuesday, working with the cast and crew from the Cherokee Community Theater's production of "Wizard of Oz." Several characters "theatrically fly" in the production, which begins tonight at 7:30 p.m. at the Cherokee Community Center. Along with the Wicked Witch and flying monkeys, "Oz" also features flying balloons, bicycles, and baskets.

Flying by Foy was in town ten years ago to work with the Community Theater's production of "Peter Pan-" a production near and dear to the Foy organization, since Flying by Foy worked with Jean Arthur on Broadway, Mary Martin on television, and subsequent Peter Pan's Sandy Duncan and Cathy Rigby over the years. They also taught "The Flying Nun" Sally Field to fly, along with Garth Brooks for his Texas Satdium show several years ago. Bottom line - if you want to do some theatrical flying, call the folks at Foy.

And your little dog, too! One of the star performers during the Wizard of Oz will be Toto - the dog's actual name as well as the name of the character it portrays. The dog belongs to Jomi Anderson. Photo by Dan Whitney
Chip Christensen, who grew up in Missouri, worked with various Foy productions in Branson for several years before joining the "Foy family" eight years ago. He said that the practices here in Cherokee have been "going great," and feels things will be more than ready to go by opening night. Christensen said that his philosophy is to "low-key" the theatrical flying, because "flying is not the performance...it's there to ENHANCE the performance."

Performances will take place on Thursday, Friday and Saturday of this week and next week at 7:30 p.m. and for the next two Sundays at 2 p.m.

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