A heartfelt welcome to Chittenango, NY, and our 39th year of celebrating the magical books and characters of Wizard of Oz author, L. Frank Baum (1856-1919) -- in his own hometown!
Our 2016 special guest is world-famous for his television, movie, and stage careers. Most fondly-remembered as “Balki” on the classic sitcom, Perfect Strangers, Bronson Pinchot has appeared in Beverly Hills Cop, Risky Business, The First Wives Club, and scores of other films and TV shows, including The Bronson Pinchot Project. But he comes here as a life-long Oz fan; it’s an honor and privilege to welcome him!
Our theme, THE WONDERFUL WOMEN OF OZ!, enables our other celebrities to salute such Baum personalities as Dorothy, Glinda, the Wicked Witch of the West, and Ozma:
Actress Emma Ridley played Ozma – mystical, benevolent Oz princess -- in Walt Disney’s cult-classic, Return to Oz (1985).
Judy Garland remains the quintessential Dorothy, and historian Jonathan Shirshekan honors Judy with his gloriously-maintained and restored archive of her stunning, original movie costumes.
Grant Hayter-Menzies and Paul Miles Schneider remember, respectively, actors Billie Burke and Margaret Hamilton: Glinda and the Wicked Witch in The Wizard of Oz film. As a boy, Paul was Ms. Hamilton’s pen-pal; he’s authored the new Oz novels, Silver Shoes and The Powder of Life. Grant has written Ms. Burke’s biography, the acclaimed Mrs. Ziegfeld.
Myrna Swensen was married to MGM Munchkin, Clarence Swensen, and her reminiscences are always a much-treasured treat for Oz aficionados.
National radio/TV personality Ryan Jay shares his exclusive video of the stars and creators of NBC’s The Wiz Live!, plus his preview of the new Wizard of Oz Train Ride. The weekend’s emcee, popular John Fricke, is an Emmy Award-winning producer and best-selling Oz/Judy Garland author. And today’s original Oz writers and illustrators will once again hold forth in OZ-Stravaganza!’s “Authors’ Alley!”
It’s our all-star, 2016 jaunt down the Yellow Brick Road….