Sadie Barbee, the performer playing Dorothy in the Lawrence Arts Center’s The Wizard of Oz, is bringing our 1920s vision to life. We sat down with Sadie to learn more about what it means to her to play Dorothy and who she is inspired by. Read below to see what she has to say!
What are Dorothy’s greatest strengths?
I think Dorothy has a lot of heart and cares for the people around her and the situations she faces. She’s also very driven. When she gets stuck in Oz and realizes that there’s a way back, she doesn’t hesitate to make the journey.
What does it mean to you to set this story in the 1920s?
For me, the 1920s was an important decade for the progression of African Americans and, more specifically, black women. The 20s was also a decade of firsts. Many black women achieved goals that had not been done before, such as the first black woman to earn a PhD. I think it’s amazing to have such a classic show like The Wizard of Oz presented with this kind of background.
Please name one woman who inspires you and tell us why.
Elizabeth Sullivan inspires me every day of my life. She is so organized with her work and I love learning from her directing and teaching. She’s also one of the most kindhearted women I know who, no matter what, always pushes above and beyond what’s expected of her.
What do you hope young people and their families talk about when they leave this performance?
I hope that after seeing this performance people of all ages will see a story they love and know told in a brand new light. I think that having not only one but three black actors in principle roles will raise awareness about black representation in media and theatre. I hope that young children will go home and see a diverse group of characters and say, “Yes, that could be me!”
Learn more about Sadie and all the amazing things she does here!
Get your tickets for The Wizard of Oz here!