This week in theater: 'Wicked' descends upon Orpheum

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The classic Tony Award-winning musical "Wicked" returns to the Twin Cities for a five-week run at the Orpheum Theatre in Minneapolis starting Wednesday and running though Oct. 27.

The musical tells the story of two girls meet in the land of Oz -- one born with emerald green skin who is smart, fiery and misunderstood, and the other who is beautiful, ambitious and very popular -- and how they become the Wicked Witch of the West and Glinda the Good before a certain girl from Kansas arrives.

On the first stop of its current Broadway tour, "Wicked" impressed Metro Boston's theater critic Nick Dussault, despite some unanticipated changes -- including an standby stepping in for the lead role of Elphaba -- as well as some sound mixing issues.

Nonetheless, Dussault called the production overall "a dazzling spectacle as ever."

"Flying monkeys, smoke and mirrors, witches, munchkins and Broadway-style glitz make the magic in this tale of life in pre-Dorothy Oz come alive," Dussault wrote.

After opening Saturday, "Uncle Vanya" resumes at the Guthrie Theater Tuesday. Director Joe Dowling's version of Anton Chekhov's 1899 classic play runs through Oct. 27.

Opening Tuesday at the Children's Theatre Company in Minneapolis is the children's classic "Charlotte's Web," which runs through Oct. 27.

Local reviews of "Wicked," "Uncle Vanya" and "Charlotte's Web" are forthcoming.

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