Danielle Wade as Dorothy with one of three Totos.

Story and photos by Caley Skinner.

It’s not every day that a 20-year old gets the stamp of approval from Andrew Lloyd Webber, credited with such hits as
The Phantom of the Opera,
Jesus Christ Superstar, and
Evita. But that day came this past Monday for LaSalle, Ontario-born Danielle Wade, who won the title of Dorothy in Webber’s Canadian production of
The Wizard of Oz after competing on CBC’s
Over the Rainbow. As Wade underwent her Dorothy transformation, she filled ELLE Canada in on her thoughts about filling those iconic sparkly red shoes.
When did you first encounter The Wizard of Oz story? It’s probably one of the first movies I ever watched; it’s one of my parents’ favourite movies as well.
So they must be super excited about you winning the Dorothy role! My mom is SO excited, my dad too.
What did they do when they found out you won the role? I looked over at them, and they were bawling their eyes out! My dad was obviously trying to pretend like he wasn’t—he told me his allergies were acting up. I’d never seen my dad cry, so that was pretty exciting.
How did your friends react? Everybody’s been so supportive! It’s amazing how much support everyone got throughout the whole thing. I never would’ve expected any of that.
How were your relationships with the other potential Dorothys? We’re all really, really close. It wasn’t a competition with each other; it was a competition with yourself. It didn’t matter who won, and I said that a bunch of times, because anyone of us would do a good job.
Click through for more from Danielle on life as a brand-new stage star, her beauty routine and what she thinks of Les Misérables