Seattle Rep is thrilled to be commissioning our own Public Works musical adaptation of The Wizard of Oz, titled The Emerald City, based on the novels by L. Frank Baum.
Seattle Rep’s most-produced living playwright Cheryl L. West (Shout Sister Shout!, Pullman Porter Blues), with music and lyrics by Paris Ray Dozier, will bring to life the stunning world of Oz with a Pacific Northwest spirit, highlighting and embracing local artists, partner organizations, cameo groups, and community pillars.
Since 2016, Seattle Rep's Public Works has produced two live (and one virtual) joyful musical adaptations of world classics originally commissioned by our Public Works National cohort partners at The Public Theater, the founding home of the Public Works model. The creators developed these plays with a vision to build community by connecting people through participatory theater—both performing it and experiencing it—creating a more welcoming region for all.
We’ve always wanted to bring a project to the stage and to our community that not only worked in our region, but was written for us. We can’t wait to share Cheryl’s interpretation of the journey and the joy of this classic, and all the friends that are made along the way.
Meet the Artists
Cheryl L. West
Cheryl L. West’s plays have been seen in England, off-Broadway, on Broadway (Play On!), and in numerous regional theaters including Minneapolis Children’s Theatre, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Seattle Rep, Arena Stage, Old Globe, Goodman Theatre, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Bay Street Theatre Festival, Syracuse Stage, Cleveland Play House, South Coast Rep, Merrimack, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, and off‐Broadway’s Manhattan Theatre Club, Second Stage, Atlantic Theater Company, and Primary Stages. Her plays include, Fannie, Shout Sister Shout!, Last Stop on Market Street, The Watsons Go To Birmingham, 1963, Akeelah and the Bee, Pullman Porter Blues, Motherhood Out Loud (co-author); Addie, American Girl Story (21-city tour); and Jar the Floor. She has written TV and film projects at Disney, Paramount, MTV Films, Showtime, TNT, HBO, CBS, and is the Webby-nominated writer for the original web series "Diary of a Single Mom." Ms. West is currently working on commissions for Chicago’s Goodman Theatre and Seattle Rep, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Minneapolis Children’s Theater, and Seattle Children’s Theatre.
Photo by Abe Booker
Paris Ray Dozier
Music & Lyrics
Paris Ray Dozier is a composer, lyricist, and recording artist from Encino, California whose works span across Hip-Hop, RnB, Pop, and Musical Theater genres. Born into a musical family, he became accustomed to creative expression at a very young age. Dozier's career began when he was 15, after attending the Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute in West Hollywood, CA where he performed in Shakespearean productions. Paris went on to write songs for artists on Disney Music Group's Hollywood Records, where he was also signed as a singer-songwriter and producer. Soon after his tenure at Hollywood Records, Paris became the musical theme writer and co-host for B InTune TV, which aired on the UPN Network, ABC Television, NBC and Fox.
Paris has done work for Above Average Productions' The Kicker, the online comedy platform of Saturday Night Live creator Lorne Michaels and SNL’s co-head writer, Bryan Tucker. Paris produced the music for the musical comedy sketch “Hold Em Back” starring SNL star Keenan Thompson. Paris also composed the music, lyrics, and original scores for various plays and musicals including In the Blood, Last Stop on Market Street, The Watsons Go to Birmingham, Mr. Chickee's Funny Money, and the Lyric Opera of Chicago production We Got Next. Paris continues to work on a variety of endeavors, ranging from commercial Hip-Hop/RnB recordings to musical theater projects.
Behind the Scenes with Cheryl L. West
Hear more from commission playwright Cheryl L. West about her inspirations, process, thoughts on creating art in the COVID era, and more in her Creative Conversation with Artistic Director Braden Abraham (July 2020).
In the News
Seattle Rep's Public Works
Theater of, by, and for the people, rooted in the values of equity, imagination, and joy.
The cast of Seattle Rep's Public Works' As You Like It (2019). Photo by Bronwen Houck.