There’s no place like Broadway! At least that’s what the producers of Chasing Rainbows: The Road to Oz — a new musical about the early life of Judy Garland — are hoping. A concert version of the show was recently staged at the National Arts Club in New York City, and the production has become the first theater, film or TV property about the legendary star to receive the endorsement of her estate.
“My mother said that her biography is in her music, and now a talented, creative team is using that music to tell the story of her early years and her extraordinary rise to fame,” her daughter Liza Minnelli said in a recent interview with Deadline.
“I’m grateful and happy they’re telling the fascinating story of her early history,” Liza, 72, added. The show chronicles the former Frances Gumm’s days in vaudeville as part of a sister act with siblings Mary Jane and Dorothy as well as her star-making role in The Wizard of Oz. A full-scale production that could make it to the Great White Way would feature songs made famous by Judy like “Over the Rainbow” — and no doubt make fans’ dreams come true.
Judy died from an accidental overdose in 1969 at age 47 and although she passed away too soon, her memory still lives on in Hollywood today. A biopic about her life is also currently in the works with Chicago actress Renée Zellweger playing Judy in the film. To give an amazing performance, Renée, 48, said she researched all of the past interviews, concerts and movies that Judy ever appeared in.
“She’s so comfortable,” Renée said about the late star. “She was so funny and cool.” The movie is expected to hit theaters next September and although Liza said that she does “not approve” of the film, it’s still a highly anticipated project in the works that many of Judy’s fans are eager to see!
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