Uzo Aduba on ‘The Wiz Live!’ and Being Drawn to Glinda’s Goodness

The "Orange is the New Black" star talks about her role in the live production and why she was drawn to the good witch.

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Photo by: Paul Gilmore/NBC

Back in August, Rico talked with “Orange is the New Black” actress Uzo Aduba about her deeply sympathetic portrayal of Suzanne, a.k.a. “Crazy Eyes,” on the Netflix series. At the time, she was getting ready to pull double duty filming the show’s new season and rehearsing for “The Wiz Live!”

The musical — which also stars Queen Latifah, Common, Mary J. Blige, and more — airs live tonight on NBC. Uzo plays Glinda, the Good Witch of the South, and she shared a little insight on why she was interested in the role and why there might be a few similarities between Glinda and Suzanne.

“Suzanne’s heart is good at the end of the day. She is good, she is pure. Everything about her is pure,” Uzo explained. “And while I’m right now doing the excavation work for Glinda, I’m digging into her, and she also is in possession of a goodness and a purity and love that I am drawn to.”

Photo by: Paul Gilmore/NBC

“I’m also very drawn to this idea of the word ‘witch’ itself and how we use it today in contemporary language, and how it can connote a very specific kind of woman,” she added. “[I’m] trying my best right now to sort of figure out how to unpack that word and rediscover it… and empower it, maybe, in another way.”