Dogs and their owners travelled from far and wide to take part in the auditions for the much sought-after role of Toto this week, to air in the Over The Rainbow results show this Sunday.
The judging panel consisted of resident This Morning animal experts Sarah Fisher and Gerry Cott and winner of I’d Do Anything, host Jodie Prenger. The group had the difficult job of whittling the hundreds of entrants down to a mere ten.
These 10 finalists, will then be invited to appear in front of Andrew Lloyd Webber, who will select five dogs to continue into the competition. Viewers will then see the dogs in a series of tasks over the course of the next few weeks, and Andrew and the Toto panel will decide on the dog who will win the coveted place to appear on stage, in a one-off gala performance of The Wizard Of Oz in the West End next year. The winning Toto will be announced in the final Over The Rainbow show.
Dogs came in all shapes and sizes, and from far-flung areas of the country – from Edinburgh and Devon to Neath in Wales. One owner from London, took her pampered pooch on the 200 mile round-trip to the auditions in Warwickshire by taxi, insisting on a “wait and return” so that she could guarantee her pet a comfortable journey! Another travelled by the more eco-friendly route of bicycle, carrying her dog in a basket at the front… possibly a good indication of how well her dog can sit in a basket!