Los Angeles (USA), Jul 12 (EFE) .- A professor at the Catholic University of America, located in Washington, has found in a warehouse one of the dresses that Judy Garland allegedly wore when playing Dorothy in the classic “The Wizard of Oz”, 1939.
Matt Ripa, who works in the theater department, heard rumors that a former student gifted the garment to the academic institution in 1973 and spent years searching for it, until he located it in a group of stacked boxes during a cleanup session.
Although the authenticity of the dress has not been confirmed, a group of researchers at the Smithsonian Institution’s Museum of American History considers it to be one of the original press, as it contains the same elements as the rest of Garland’s wardrobe, such as a secret pocket in the right side and the name of the actress written by hand.
“I was curious to know what was inside and I opened a bag. Inside was a shoe box, and inside the shoe box was the dress! I could not believe it,” Ripa said in a statement from the University.
According to the institution, actress Mercedes McCambridge gave the garment to the university after studying there in 1972. No one knows how the dress was made, although it is believed that she maintained a friendship with Garland.
“The Wizard of Oz” is one of the most important films of classic cinema and, with the passage of time, it has become an icon of American culture.
For example, the red (ruby) shoes worn by the character of Dorothy in the film are one of the most visited attractions in the Smithsonian Foundation Museum of American History, although several copies were designed for the shoot, such as a pair that stolen from the Judy Garland Museum in Minnesota and was recovered by the FBI in 2018.
Now, Dorothy’s dress will also be exhibited in the American capital, although in the museum of the Catholic University of America.
“It can be properly preserved in an environment with controlled temperature and humidity so that, hopefully, for many more years, it can be a source of” hope, strength and courage “for students,” the university said.