Wanda's World musical logo with cartoon of Wnada jumping for joy.

Wanda’s World

50 Minutes
TYA
6F, 5M
Family Audiences

Overview

Wanda Butternut is the popular host of the hit TV talk show “Wanda’s World,” where kids call in to get advice from Wanda to solve their problems. Wanda is beautiful, confident and always knows what to say…in her fantasy. In real life, Wanda is a middle school girl with a big birthmark on her face, who is terrified to deal with the first day of school in a new town. Gradually, with the help of an extraordinary teacher, she overcomes incredible odds and learns to follow her own path. WANDA’S WORLD was produced Off-Broadway where it received a Drama Desk Award nomination for Outstanding Book of a Musical. It also received a Lucille Lortel Award nomination for Outstanding Musical.

Casting & Production

Casting

6 female and 5 male featured roles

Expandable ensemble with featured solos and lines

WANDA’S WORLD can be performed with as few as 11 actors (6F/5M) or as many as you wish. The small cast is broken down as follows: 5 girls, 1 adult female (who plays two roles), and 4 boys, 1 adult male (who plays two roles, one being a dog)

Expanding the WANDA’S WORLD Cast: The cast list below outlines the expanded cast (with an asterisk * indicating added roles). Specific notes explaining how we added/adapted some of these roles are included. If you follow along with the script while looking at the list, it should be clear how you can make similar adjustments to suit the needs of your talent pool.

THE CAST (in order of Vocal Part):

SPANGLES: Our Spangles was played by a boy, but it could also be a girl. SPANGLES is Wanda’s loyal dog, but in her fantasy, he is the charismatic announcer of her TV show and the rock star who boosts her courage in “Don’t Mess With Me.” This actor also doubled as a student in the ensemble.

*WANDA’S DREAMGIRLS: A trio of singer/dancers who are like Wanda’s “Supremes” in her fantasy TV show. As part of her fantasy, they are there to support Wanda and react to the callers. They sang the first stanza of the opening number, and then the rest of the ensemble joined them (wearing robes and underdressed with school clothes). WANDA’S DREAMGIRLS also sang the opening lines in scene 7 (we changed it to “give HER a call”, and added harmony). In “Don’t Mess With Me”, they sang “Well are you gonna take it” before the rest of the dancers entered.

WANDA BUTTERNUT: This role requires the most versatile and honest actress/singer you can find. A few technical notes: 1) Find a good makeup artist to experiment with birthmark makeup (red, blue, purple) under the lights you’ll be using. Be sure the birthmark “reads” well to the back of your auditorium; 2) Give WANDA plenty of rehearsal time with her wig in the opening number. It needs to cover the birthmark in her fantasy sequences, and she needs to be able to put it on and take it off quickly.

CALLER #1: Cocoa Beach – “blend equals friend” girl, in opening AND scene 7 & 16

CALLER #2: Bethlehem, PA – “pack snacks” girl, in opening AND scene 7 & 16

CALLER #3: Madison, WI – “take control” girl, in opening AND scene 7 & 16

JAKE: Wants to be an athlete, but clearly isn’t. It is funny if he is awkward in some way.

ETHAN: Our ETHAN happened to be a tap dancer, so in the football scene where he played the Cheese Valley Cow mascot, he performed a funny tap solo.

TY BELVEDERE: The audience has to believe that the girls would go crazy for this boy.

MEGHAN: To expand JENNY’S clique, we reassigned MEGHAN’S “Totally” lines (repeated throughout the show) to the added character of TINA. CORY: We reassigned her “Tell me about it” lines to TASHA. (see below)

*BECKY: An added member of JENNY’S clique. Hears the gossip from CORY in “No One Can Know.” Smarter than the others in the clique.

P.J. DUNBAR: Our PJ was really short, which added to the comedy of this strong character.

JENNY HIGHTOWER: The only change we made regarding JENNY is that we reassigned her lines in “She’s So Last Week” so that all the girls in her clique had solos.

*TINA: Added member of JENNY’S clique. Idolizes JENNY. Always says “totally” after JENNY says something she thinks is cool. Screams when she’s excited. A gum chewer.

*TASHA: Added member of JENNY’S clique. Obsessed with her own hair. Very critical of others, especially WANDA. Always says “tell me about it” after TINA says “totally.”

MS. DINGLEDERRY: We had an adult actress in the role. Requires maturity, sensitivity and humor.

MR. LEMMINGS: We had an adult actor in the role. Needs to be a father figure to WANDA.

*JOCKS: A clique in the Ensemble

*SKATERS: A clique in the Ensemble

*CHEESE VALLEY GLEE CLUB: Six strong harmonizers (“Glee” geeks) who sing the theme song at the beginning the school TV show.

ALISON CARMICHAEL: Very dull candidate for student council president. Different from the other girls. Book-smart but socially awkward and nerdy. Tries to act very professional.

*EMILY: ALISON’S best friend and personal assistant for her presidential campaign. Clumsy and nervous under the pressure of the campaign. Emily doesn’t have “lines” but can whisper and have intensely private conversations with ALISON. They are a comical pair.

CHEERLEADERS: JENNY’S clique. Add as many others as you want, and have uniforms & pompoms for.

*CHUCK: Football commentator:(instead of MR. LEMMINGS, in Scene 9)

*VAL: Football commentator:(instead of MS. DINGLEDERRY, in Scene 9)

CALLER #4: Hot Springs , AR – “hot-guy-noticed-me girl” in scene 11 & 16

CALLER #5: “Am I fat?” girl in Finale

CALLER #6: “Flush head down toilet” wimpy boy in Finale (in our production, he hung out with ALISON & EMILY throughout the show)

Orchestral Information

3+ Musicians:

Piano

Bass (Electric & Upright Bass)

Drums (Drum Set)

Optional:

Keyboard 2

Reed 1 (Flute, Clarinet, & Tenor Sax)

Trumpet

Trombone

Guitar (Electric & Nylon String Acoustic)

Credits

WANDA’S WORLD

Music & Lyrics by: Beth Falcone

Book by: Eric H. Weinberger

Story by Eric H. Weinberger & Beth Falcone

Resources

BookTix Logo for TRW Musicals