The Tik-Tok Man of Oz

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The Tik-Tok Man of Oz
A Companion Play to The Wizard of Oz
100
Poster depicting Private Files, Betsy Bobbin, and Polychrome
Music Louis F. Gottschalk
Victor Schertzinger
Lyrics L. Frank Baum
Oliver Morosco
Book L. Frank Baum
Basis Ozma of Oz
by L. Frank Baum
Productions Oliver Morosco, 1913

The Tik-Tok Man of Oz is a musical play with book and lyrics by L. Frank Baum and music by Louis F. Gottschalk that opened at the Majestic Theatre in Los Angeles, California on March 31, 1913.[1] It is loosely inspired by Baum's book Ozma of Oz (1907), incorporates much of the material from Baum's book Tik-Tok and the Nome King (1913), and was the basis for his 1914 novel, Tik-Tok of Oz. It was promoted as "A Companion Play to The Wizard of Oz" and directed by Frank M. Stammers. The play is known from its advertising and published music, but survives only in earlier manuscript.

Genesis[edit]

The Shubert Organization expressed interest in an extravaganza based on Ozma of Oz in 1909.[2] The play began as a collaboration between Baum and composer Manuel Klein, an employee of the Shuberts, which they worked on during February–April 1909, first under the title, The Rainbow's Daughter, or the Magnet of Love, but eventually retitled Ozma of Oz, or The Magnet of Love.[3] It incorporated elements of The Road to Oz, which was published that July, mainly in the inclusion of two of its new characters, the Shaggy Man and Polychrome, the Rainbow's daughter (which created some continuity inconsistencies when it was adapted to the novel), both of which were influenced by Prince Silverwings. Betsy Bobbin was intended to be Dorothy Gale, but the characters in The Wizard of Oz and The Woggle-Bug were contractually unavailable to him—although "Ozma" remained from The Woggle-Bug, she was a wholly different character renamed Ozga for the books. It also adapted the Rose Kingdom from the Kingdom of Mangaboos in Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz, and Queen Ann was derived from General Jinjur in spite of the failure of The Woggle-Bug. The show languished before 1912, when Oliver Morosco agreed to produce it.[4]

Adaptation[edit]

The musical play The Tik-Tok Man of Oz was based on L. Frank Baum's 1907 Oz book Ozma of Oz, which in turn had incorporated material from Baum's unpublished manuscript King Rinkitink. The play incorporated material that Baum also used in his 1908 Oz book Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz. Baum used his characters of the Shaggy Man and Polychrome in both the play and his 1909 Oz book The Road to Oz, which he was working on at the same time. Newspaper accounts indicate that Baum had begun work on the play in late 1906 or early 1907, but it would take until March 1913 to be produced on stage.

L. Frank Baum based two of his books, Tik-Tok of Oz and Tik-Tok and the Nome King, on this play.

In the play, Ozma is a princess in the Rose Kingdom and is analogous to Ozga in the novel, who is Private Files's love interest, as is Ozga in the novel, there described as Ozma's cousin. Michael Patrick Hearn speculates that both names are in honor of Baum's wife, Maud Gage (MAud GAge).

The play introduces several characters that will be familiar with readers of the novel, Tik-Tok of Oz, such as Private Jo Files, who was portrayed by Charles Ruggles during the beginning of his career, and Queen Ann Soforth of Oogaboo, who was ultimately played by Charlotte Greenwood near the end of the run.

Production[edit]

The musical was directed by Frank Stammers, with scenery designed by Robert Brunton.[5] It was produced by Oliver Morosco, who by September 1913 had deemed it not successful enough to take it to Broadway, even though he had inserted three songs of his own writing with music by Victor Schertzinger. The show was extremely popular in Los Angeles and San Francisco, but it was greeted lukewarmly by critics in Chicago, who consistently compared it to the earlier 1902 play The Wizard of Oz. Among the mixed to negative reviewers was Amy Leslie of the Chicago Daily News, who described it as a "revival instead of a sequel," finding Gottschalk's music "delicious" but inconsequential to the spectacle of pretty girls and special effects. Leslie claimed that Baum "has no more sense of humor than one of his talking bats or mealy kittens." The show ran successfully through much of the summer in Chicago, despite critical boredom. The New York Review on October 18, 1913, noted that the play was to close for two weeks for practical reconstruction of the sets, and noted it was likely to open in winter in one of the three largest Eastern cities, but this was still up to Morosco. The article described it as "a Western production." Although The Tik-Tok Man of Oz was still making money, Morosco decided it was too expensive to continue running [6] or to risk the Broadway run that had been originally planned. After the Chicago run, it continued for five months on the road throughout the American midwest, Canada, and the American west, before closing once again in Los Angeles in late January 1914.

Oliver Morosco would later cast Charlotte Greenwood, the final Queen Ann, in So Long Letty, a role he had commissioned for her that would make her a star. The Oz Scrapbook erroneously captions Josie Intropidi as Queen Ann with Charlotte Greenwood's name.[7]

Cover of sheet music for the Imps March

Revivals[edit]

An early draft of Ozma of Oz, provided by Michael Patrick Hearn, has been performed in readings at conventions of The International Wizard of Oz Club. It was performed with the Gottschalk songs (Klein was still assigned to the project when it had this title, but it is not known what, if anything, he composed) at the Ozmopolitan Convention (Holland, Michigan) in 1982 and the Munchkin (Wilmington, Delaware) and Winkie (Pacific Grove, California) Conventions in 1984. This production premiered at the Castle Club Theatre, June 19, 1982, and starred Marc Lewis as Tik-Tok and Ruggedo, John Fricke as Private Files, Rob Roy MacVeigh as The Shaggy Man, and Robin Olderman as Betsy, Polychrome, Ozma, and Queen Ann. For the 1984 performances, Jeryl Metz joined the cast to play Polychrome and Dick Martin provided the promotional artwork.

A fully staged revival prepared by Eric Shanower from the surviving portions of The Tik-Tok Man of Oz script supplemented by the earlier Ozma of Oz draft was performed on August 9, 2014, at Winkie Con 50 in San Diego, California. All nineteen of the surviving musical pieces were heard, along with commercially released "Selections" and music provided by Louis F. Gottschalk's daughter Gloria. Chrissy Burns directed a cast of eighteen, Joseph Grienenberger music directed, Jennifer Solomon-Rubio choreographed, Christopher Boltz designed the lighting, and David Maxine and Eric Shanower co-designed sets and costumes. [8]

The cast was as follows:

Betsy Bobbin, from Oklahoma - Laura Bueno

Hank the Mule - Dillon Rendo

The Shaggy Man - Eduard Cao

Ozma, the Rose Princess - Kendra Truett

Polychrome, Daughter of the Rainbow - Tamara Rodriguez

Tik-Tok, the Clockwork Man - Reggie Hutchins

Queen Ann Soforth of Oogaboo - Amanda Everett

Private Files - Vander Turner

Ruggedo, the Metal Monarch - Danny Ingersoll

Storm-at-Sea Betsy, Royal Gardener - Alyson Stein

Moss Rose - Sydney Kerl

Jacque Rose - Taylor Schwartz

The Ugly Man - Eric Shanower

Dance Ensemble - Taylor Hamilton, Caley Hernandez, Sydney Kerl, Sydney Rei, Taylor Schwartz, Alyson Stein, and Carmina Vasquez

Pas de Deux - Alex Flores and Caley Hernandez

The orchestra was as follows:

Keyboard - Joseph Grienenberger

Trumpet - Michael Fowler

Drums and Percussion - Fred Allee

Double Bass - Rafael Estrada

Plot[edit]

The plot, similar to the novel Tik-Tok of Oz, but lacking Quox and the journey to the kingdom of Tititi-Hoochoo, deals with the Shaggy Man's attempt to rescue his brother, Wiggy (unnamed in the novel),[9] from the Dominions of Ruggedo, the Metal Monarch. Meanwhile, Queen Ann Soforth seeks to lead an army against the world with every man (17 officers and one private) in her tiny kingdom of Oogaboo. Betsy Bobbin and her companion, a mule named Hank, are brought to the land in a shipwreck and storm not unlike the one in Ozma of Oz. In the Rose Kingdom they meet the Shaggy Man and rescue Ozma, the Rose Princess. Later they meet Polychrome, the Rainbow's Daughter, whom Ruggedo tries to keep in his kingdom to brighten it up. As Baum put it in the introduction of Tik-Tok of Oz, "There is a play called The Tik-Tok Man of Oz, but it is not like this story of Tik-Tok of Oz, although some of the adventures recorded in this book, as well as those in several other Oz books, are included in the play. Those who have seen the play and those who have read the other Oz books will find in this story a lot of strange characters and adventures that they have never heard of before."

Cast[edit]

Harry Kelly, who had previously turned down the title role in The Woggle-Bug, and Joe Whitehead replaced Morton and Moore in the leads while they vacationed.[10]

Songs[edit]

All songs are written by Baum and Gottschalk unless otherwise specified.

  • The Magnet of Love
  • When in Trouble Come to Papa (Ruggedo and Polychrome)
  • The Waltz Scream
  • Dear Old Hank (Betsy)
  • So Do I
  • The Clockwork Man (Tik-Tok and Clock Girl Chorus)
  • Oh My Bow (Polychrome)
  • Ask the Flowers to Tell You (Files and Ozma)
  • Rainbow Bride
  • Just for Fun (Flirting Song)
  • Army of Oogaboo
  • March of the Imps
  • An Apple's the Cause of It All (Shaggy Man)
  • Work, Lads, Work
  • Folly
  • My Wonderful Dream Girl (Morosco/Schertzinger)
  • There's a Mate in this Big World for You (Morosco/Schertzinger)
  • Oh! Take Me (Morosco/Schertzinger)
  • I Want to be Somebody's Girlie (Schertzinger)

Two player piano rolls of suites and vintage recordings of "Ask the Flowers to Tell You" and "My Wonderful Dream Girl" can be found on Disc 2 of David Maxine's Grammy-nominated collection of Vintage Recordings from the 1903 Musical The Wizard of Oz (2003), while James Patrick Doyle performs a suite of many of the songs on synthesizer in his collection Before the Rainbow: The Original Music of Oz (1999), both released by Hungry Tiger Press.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Tik Tok To Tick Tonight," Los Angeles Times (Mar. 31, 1913), p. III1.
  2. ^ Michael Patrick Hearn. "Baum's Mystic Shrines of Pretty Fancy: Amy Leslie's Reviews of Oz Part III." The Baum Bugle 39:1 (Spring 1995) pp. 8-11, 9
  3. ^ Michael Patrick Hearn. The Annotated Wizard of Oz. W.W. Norton, 2000., p. 388-389
  4. ^ Fraser A. Sherman. The Wizard of Oz Catalog. McFarland, 2005. p. 70)
  5. ^ Hector Alliot, "Tik Tok Man Quaint Whimsical Diversion," Los Angeles Times (Apr. 1, 1913), p. III1.
  6. ^ Michael Patrick Hearn The Annotated Wizard of Oz. W.W. Norton, 2000, pp. lxxv-lxxvi.)
  7. ^ David L. Greene and Dick Martin. The Oz Scrapbook. Random House, 1977.
  8. ^ http://tiktokman.blogspot.com/
  9. ^ Dick Martin. "Dramatic Influence on Oz." The Baum Bugle 6:2 (August 1962), 5-8. p. 6
  10. ^ Hearn 1995, p. 11

External links[edit]