Cary Players: It’s Off to See the Wizard!

Cary, NC — The Cary Players finish the 2015-2016 season with their most ambitious musical production yet, “The Wizard of Oz.” The show starts this Thursday and runs for two weekends at the Cary Arts Center in downtown Cary.

45-Member Cast

Cary Players newcomer Emily Gautier plays the role of Dorothy with veteran actors Ran Northam as Scarecrow, Daryl Ray Carliles as the Tinman and Mark Taranto as the Cowardly Lion helping her down the yellow brick road.

From left to right, Mark Taranto as Lion, Daryl Ray Carliles as Tin Man, Ran Northam as Scarecrow, Emily Gautier as Dorothy, and Roo as Toto. Photo by Rob Byron.

From left to right, Mark Taranto as Lion, Daryl Ray Carliles as Tin Man, Ran Northam as Scarecrow, Emily Gautier as Dorothy, and Roo as Toto.

Along their way, they encounter a host of munchkins, ozians, enchanted trees and flying monkeys as they eventually meet both the Wizard of Oz (played by Thad Bell) and the Wicked Witch of the West (played by Sharon Galluzzo).

There are 45 community members in the cast.

The show runs for two weekends, April 15-17 and 22-24, at the Cary Arts Center in downtown Cary and includes some extra treats during the run.

Oz-Themed Fun

The organization partnered with the Town of Cary on some fun promotions leading up to the show.

“The town came to us and wanted to do something big together,” said Dan Martschenko, founder and president of Cary Players. “What could be bigger than one of the most beloved stories of all time?”

The town is planning a series of events leading up to the show, including a Selfie Booth at the Cary Arts Center, an Oz Trivia Contest, a Storytime with Dorothy and Toto, a Tin Man Food Drive to benefit Dorcas Ministries and a Munchkin Raffle.

There will even be a Lions, Tigers and Bears art class in which little ones can create their own Toto to take to the show.

The Cary Theater down the street showed the classic film The Wizard of Oz last weekend.

Special Activities at Several Shows

  • April 15 – Opening night crowds will be treated to a pre-show concert by the Cary Children’s Concert Choir and a post-show slice of Cary Players traditional opening night cake.
  • April 17 – Patrons attending this performance are encouraged to bring their own cameras and stay afterward to pose for pictures with their favorite Oz characters and cast members.
  • April 23 – This afternoon performance is a special Family Interactive Show with munchkin-sized pricing and audience participation.
  • Anyone coming to any show dressed up as their favorite Oz character can expect to receive a special pre-show treat from the Lollipop Guild.

“We want to make this a fun community event for all ages,” said Sarah Preston, one of the show’s producers. “Anyone coming to the Cary Arts Center between now and the show can catch with a sharp eye the transformation of the Cary Arts Center to the Land of Oz.”


Ticket information is available at or at the Town of Cary box offices located at The Cary Theater and the Cary Arts Center. Tickets are $20/adult, $18/senior or student and $17/each for groups of 20 or more. Special pricing of $15/adult and $10/child (12 and under) is available for the Interactive Family Show on Saturday, April 23, at 3:00 pm, but tickets are limited.

Event Info

The Wizard of Oz
Presented by the Cary Players
Cary Arts Center, 101 Dry Avenue, Cary
April 15-17 and 22-24, 2016

For showtimes and tickets, visit the Cary Players’ website.

Story by Lindsey Chester. Photo by Rob Byron.