Aviva will lead us somewhere over the rainbow in Southampton

Aviva Tulley will be our as Dorothy as the London Palladium production of The Wizard Of Oz plays Southampton’s Mayflower Theatre from Tuesday to Sunday, January 16-21.
The Wizard of Oz (contributed pic)The Wizard of Oz (contributed pic)
The Wizard of Oz (contributed pic)

They come to Southampton off the back of a hugely enjoyable Christmas in Liverpool.

“I wasn't in the London Palladium production,” says Aviva, “which I think was last summer and I didn't get a chance to see it. I got the job just as it was finishing. I went for it and I never expected to get Dorothy but it's really been a dream come true. I had three auditions. The first one was just ‘Sing any song’ and I sang a song that I had in my rep. I got through to the second round and then I was asked to sing Somewhere Over The Rainbow and do a dance. I got to through to the third round and the third round was to do a scene from the musical and also to do Somewhere Over The Rainbow again and I heard the next week that I had got the job. I just remember running downstairs telling my mum and my sister ‘I have got Dorothy! I've got Dorothy!’ It's just total shock. I didn’t know how to celebrate. I told my partner and I was just so happy.

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“We started rehearsing in November and I've never been in a show where a character never leaves the stage and where that character is me! I opened the script and I thought ‘Wow, I'm on every page!’ It was intense and we only had three weeks’ rehearsals. Usually you get more but it was great. We opened on December 13 in Liverpool and that was just amazing. The theatre was huge and we had such a great time.”

Now Aviva is looking forward to Southampton where she previously toured in The Book of Mormon: “Dorothy is a great character to play. I think what you have to put across is her strength. I mean her inner strength. She is not built or strong, I mean. I don't know how to describe it but she reminds me of Pocahontas or maybe Lucy in The Lion The Witch And The Wardrobe. Lucy has got strength, but her family don't understand her and don't believe her that she went to Narnia. But she says ‘I have been to Narnia!’ Dorothy has got that strength as well. She's very different to the rest of her town and her family, and the rest of them don't understand her and it's a little bit the same.

“Dorothy is a girl from Kansas who feels herself an outsider. She gets into the tornado which takes her into a dreamlike fantasy and she meets along the way these beautiful friends that love her to pieces. The people in Oz understand her and then she goes home and she has changed. She feels she understands herself now. It's a lovely story.

“We're going to be doing the show until August and I just love it. I did the tour of The Book of Mormon so I know how it goes with touring and that was actually 15 months which was obviously a lot longer but I just love being away from London and seeing different places and going to different theatres and getting paid for it and working!”

Tickets from the venue.