Ten hope for public vote on Lloyd Webber show

Ten contestants were today hoping the public will rescue their dreams of playing Dorothy in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s new production of 'The Wizard Of Oz'.

Ten contestants were today hoping the public will rescue their dreams of playing Dorothy in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s new production of 'The Wizard Of Oz'.

Just half of the 20 performers shortlisted in the new television talent search 'Over The Rainbow' were selected by judges to perform on next week’s live show.

The remainder are hoping they have impressed viewers enough to be granted a wildcard for an 11th place.

Phone lines opened after last night’s BBC1 show and the one with the most votes will get another chance to impress the judges next week after the result is revealed.

Lord Lloyd-Webber said Judy Garland’s movie performance was “iconic” but he was not looking for an impersonation and wanted a modern Dorothy.

“I’m looking for a girl who’s a bit feisty. It’s got to be a Dorothy who’s got a bit of edge,” he said.

The contestants with a guaranteed place include glamour girl Amy Diamond, who had a small role in BBC1’s Hustle, and Sophie Evans, who made it through to boot camp in 2008’s 'The X Factor'.

Also through is Steph Fearon, whose father Phil Fearon was in the 1980s band Galaxy and whose mother Dorothy Fearon sang on the 1994 Baby D hit 'Let Me Be Your Fantasy'.

The 20 who made the shortlist from thousands of applicants were split into groups of four for last night’s performances.

Each group performed a pop song and a song from a famous musical.

West End leading ladies Ruthie Henshall (Chicago), Mel C (Blood Brothers), Kerry Ellis (We Will Rock You), Tamzin Outhwaite (Sweet Charity) and Sheridan Smith (Legally Blonde) offered the groups advice on their performances.

Over The Rainbow follows other hugely successful TV talent searches by Lord Lloyd-Webber such as 'I’d Do Anything' and 'Any Dream Will Do'.

Jodie Prenger, who won a part as Nancy in the West End show 'Oliver!' on 2008’s 'I’d Do Anything', performed during last night’s show.

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