If you’re anything like me, you still smile at the thought of NBC’s recent live broadcast of “The Wiz Live.” It was such a beautiful display of the brilliance of Black people, Black women particularly. And I’m very appreciative of everyone who helped bring that production to our television screens.
And even though it’s been weeks since it aired, there are still little behind the scenes secrets that are being released that make us appreciate the production even more.
If you looked at any of the promotional photos for “The Wiz Live,” you might have noticed that Glinda the Good Witch of the North, played by Uzo Aduba, rocked a curly blonde wig. But in the actual broadcast, Aduba’s hair was a braided, updo natural style that was elegant and regal, resembling a crown.
That was no doubt intentional.
In a recent interview with theGrio, Shanice Williams, who played Dorothy in the broadcast, explained the decision.
“I know you saw the promo pictures for Glinda with the blonde hair, and we was like, ‘Good witch doesn’t have to have blonde hair, she can have her natural braided up hair, like an African-American queen.’ I’m happy that they stuck with those choices. It added to her character. She’s just funky, modern and fierce.”
Many of the Black women in the play, from Shanice to the background singers and dancers, rocked a plethora of natural hair styles, showing the splendor and versatility of Black hair.
And for Shanice, it was even bigger than hair.
“This was the perfect time for The Wiz. It shows that we’re African-Americans, we’re doing something positive, and we’re bringing joy to people, and anyone can do anything.”
yes, Yes, YES!
You can check out the rest of Shanice’s interview over at theGrio.com.