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Jennifer DiNoia has traveled the world with Wicked, shifting between various American cities to perform the musical in Australia and South Korea and now in London, where she plays Elphaba at the Apollo Victoria through January 31. As she entered the final phase of her limited West End run, the delightful DeNoia chatted with Broadway.com about flying all over the world as the green-tinted witch.How amazing to have you in London as part of what seems to be your ongoing tour of the globe with Wicked.I know, right? It’s like I’m the international Elphaba, which is probably why they send me everywhere. I think [the producers] know I really enjoy it. My whole journey with this show has been so wonderful, and I couldn’t be happier about it.Where did your Wicked journey begin?I started as a dancer-swing in 2006 so I’ve been with the show on and off for almost nine years. In auditions, I had always gone in for the dance call, but then when I saw the show and heard the recording, I absolutely fell in love with it. After watching [performer] Kristy Cates I thought, “Oh my goodness, this show is insane and I want to play this role,” but it took a while for me to get to do it.Which you did eventually!Yes, I was a swing for a year and a half in the Chicago company and then I took on the understudy part and eventually moved into standby. I was fortunate enough to be a standby for quite some time during which I learned a lot of things from all the women I was standing by for while also building up my own stamina at the same time.When did you first go overseas with the show?The years all mush together, but I went out to Sydney [Australia] because somebody was injured. I found out on a Friday and left on a Monday—they had just opened in Sydney, so they needed someone who could jump on quick. Some while later, the Australian production went on their Asian tour so they needed a standby for that, which meant I got to go back and revisit all my friends.Have you always had the travel bug?Not at all. My family did a lot of camping when I was young but that was only in the U.S. My first time going abroad besides Canada was a trip to Italy for the first time in 2008 while I was still doing Wicked in Chicago. The London call kind of came out of the blue: I was in New York filling in on the Broadway company for a couple of weeks when it was mentioned that they needed somebody out here for a few months and everything fell into place.I hope you’re keeping a journal![Laughs.] I started keeping kind of one while I was in Korea but I really should write more stuff down. I have the memories in my head for sure.Does Wicked change depending on where in the world you are performing it?In Korea, they don’t have artichokes, so we changed that reference to broccoli. And where we talk in the U.S. version of the show of having “room assignments,” here in London we call them “room allocations.”Do you find that the material itself always works?This show seems to have no problem connecting anywhere. In Korea it was interesting because nobody there knows The Wizard of Oz. They never grew up with all that, so even though that part of the story is very clever and unique, it’s the relationship between the two women that makes people love [the musical] so much and keep coming back. At heart this is a really beautiful story of friendship, and presumably everyone can relate in some way to that experience.The original London Elphaba was Idina Menzel, and I think it works having that character speak with a different accent.It really does, and the Wizard here has an American accent, which kind of fits, as well. The thing about Elphaba is that she comes from a different world so it sort of makes sense that she’s not like everybody else. The truth is, once they hired me for London, the question of how I would sound never came up. I think they just assumed I would sound like myself.Do you find yourself changing intonation and inflection at all?Very much so. When I’m singing with Savannah Stevenson [who plays Glinda] or somebody else, I find that I am definitely over-pronouncing a lot of different words. It’s so strange: I got on stage for the first night and suddenly there I was singing “defying gra-vi-tee.” it was all very crisp! I’m going to try singing it like that if I ever do the show again in America if only because it keeps you from getting lazy.Is it hard leaving your husband [designer Rion Stassi] and your dog back in New York?It is hard being away and I really do look forward to working at home, but it’s also really exciting that my husband has come to see me in every city I’ve done the show. It’s been exciting showing him my version of London.What’s next in your Wicked future?This is the sixth company that I’ve been with and as I come to the end of this London run, I find myself thinking that I would love to do it again. I would love to play it at home but I’m up for traveling as well. I love the show so much that I don’t really mind where I play it! View Comments read more
Members of the Joint Services were up to late Thursday evening searching for the body of a male who is feared dead after he fell off the Bartica Stelling on Wednesday evening.The missing man has been identified as Mikey Allen. He along with 14 others reportedly arrived on a jet boat at the Stelling from Apaika Landing, Mazaruni, Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni) around 18:45h on Wednesday and was sitting on the stelling but as he attempted to get up, he fell overboard.All attempts made to rescue him proved futile since the tide was too high and the current of the water was strong at the time. The man’s address and other details were not available up to press time. read more