Toto, I Don’t Think We Are in Pennsylvania Any More

Executive Director of PhillyGayCalendar

On May 17, 2013, spitfire drag performer Aida Snatchwell, celebrates a birthday! More exciting then the usual celebration we would normally expect for this occasion is the fact that it is also a day that Aida will realize one of her biggest dreams. Not only will she turn one year older, she will also step into a pair of iconic "slippers" before a live audience. These are not just an ordinary pair of shoes either. These slippers are none other then the ruby slippers from the most beloved of childhood stories, The Wizard of Oz! Stepping onto the stage in role of Dorothy Gale, Aida will fulfill a dream she has waited her entire life to do, and in a big way! Aida will bring to life a condensed drag production of this show (running time is 1 hour and 15 min) for an audience of delighted theater goers. Having seen a smaller production she had done of this same show last year in West Chester and for which I had to write a review about, I was blown away! This is no run of the mill re-make. It proved to be so well done with meticulous attention to detail and first rate performances, I didn’t need a tornado to blow me away. Miss Snatchwell and her cast managed to transform us all to the magical land of Oz. For just that short period of time we were all captivated and returned to a much simpler, gentler time where we all dreamed of that "somewhere over the rainbow". I caught up with Aida to get more details once I heard that the early buzz was that this show might in fact sell-out the 450 seat theater she had booked for it. 

D.M.: First congratulations, Aida! I remember that night I saw you do a mini production of this show and you had shared with me your dream of bringing a full production of the show to life. Why was doing this show such a dream come true?

A.S.: Thank you! I have always wanted to produce a version of the Wizard of OZ ever since I was a small child! Like most little girls or in my case, little gay boys, I always wanted to be Dorothy. I never thought one day that I would actually get to play her but thanks to my drag profession, I now can. Of course, there are other reasons why I wanted to do this. This is such and iconic and beloved story known world wide and it is so easy to relate to. I always wanted to re-tell the story of Oz and bring it to the stage with my own vision.

D.M.: I was informed that you also plan to make this performance a gift to others even though it’s your Birthday! Can you tell us what you have planned?

A.S.: I have decided that since I am so blessed to have my dream become a reality that I would like to pay it forward to others. This production will be a benefit and a portion of the proceeds will go to The Foundation of Hope! It is an amazing community outreach program created to raise awareness of the harmful realities of bullying, depression, and suicide. To me, this ties into the Wizard of Oz because this foundation acts as an actual place "over the rainbow" for LGBTQ youth that are looking for a safe place of love and acceptance. No one sought that more then Dorothy!

D.M.: I read the cast list and see that you have managed to bring together the " best of the best for this production! Who else can we expect to see gracing the stage along with you?

A.S.: It truly is an amazing cast and consists of the following:

Myself (Aida) as Dorothy Gale
Belladonna as Aunt Em
Fanci Dismount as Miss Gulch
Cleona Sterling as Glinda the Good Witch of the North
Shelita Buffet as the Wicked Witch of the West
Nick DiDonato as the Scarecrow
Jason Fazio as the Tinman
Garrett Heese as the Lion
Toto (my dog) as Toto

D.M.: How can folks purchase tickets and where will the show take place?

A.S.: Tickets will be sold at the door but we are suggesting people purchase them in advance via paypal at Leave your name and phone number as well for ticket confirmation! Costs of the tickets are $10.00 each! This is a ‘kid-friendly" show the whole family will enjoy! We will be performing in the theater at the Stewart J. Middle School, 1315 W. Marshall Street , Norristown, 19401! Doors open at 6:30 pm and the show begins at 7 pm! We will have a ten minute intermission and a 50/50 raffle will be drawn!

I am urging everyone to get out this night, May 17th and support what I know will be a stellar show! Aida is someone who is truly dedicated to her art and I know this production will be top-notch! She promises she will take you down the Yellow Brick Road for an evening of magic, witches, Ruby Slippers and other surprises. This production will go beyond your every day, average drag show because she is putting on one OZ-tastic production! Wishing Aida a terrific Birthday and cannot wait to see her and her incredible cast bring to life one of my most favorite shows!

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