Start polishing those silver slippers!

Newcomer Shanice Williams has landed the coveted role of Dorothy in NBC's live production of The Wiz, the network announced on Wednesday. The relative unknown beat out hundreds of other applicants to land the iconic role of Dorothy, the Kansas farm girl who gets transported to the mysterious land of Oz after being swept up in a tornado.

The 18-year-old newcomer from New Jersey joins an all-star cast that includes Mary J. Blige, Queen Latifah and David Alan Grier

The big announcement was made on the Today show, with Williams appearing to talk to Carson Daly about the big news. "It's really hitting me right now!"

But this actually isn't the first time Williams has appeared in a production of The Wiz.

Shanice Williams


"I was actually in it my eighth grade year, and my grandma's like, 'Why didn't you ever do for Dorothy? I'm so mad," Williams revealed. "So here you go, grandma! This is for you!"

Plus, we also get to see footage of Williams' amazing audition...and her learning she landed the part! We dare you not to cry watching a tearful Williams call her mom to deliver the news. Press play on the video above to watch the waterworks go down.

Queen Latifah will take on the role of the Wiz, the mysterious and powerful wizard who holds the keys to the Emerald City, while Blige will play Evillene, the Wicked Witch of the West, who controls the Winkies and the Winged Monkeys. Taking on the role of the Cowardly Lion? Grier!

A cool little casting nugget? Stephanie Mills, the original Dorothy from the Broadway production of The Wiz, is set to play Aunt Em.

The Wiz's live production will air Thursday, Dec. 4 on NBC. 

(E! and NBC are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)

  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Share