WICKED, the magical prequel to The Wizard of Oz, will be flying back into Liverpool's Empire Theatre for a four week stay between March 7 and March 31.

One of the most successful productions in the venue's history, Wicked was previously seen by over 68,000 people - equivalent to one in seven people in Liverpool - during its celebrated engagement in September and October, 2014.

Now the show telling the story of all that happened before Dorothy set foot on the famed Yellow Brick Road, a role made famous by Judy Garland in the 1939 film, is set to return with Amy Ross in the role of Elphaba, Helen Woolf as Glinda and, returning to the role for this extensive tour, Brookside favourite Stephen Pinder as Doctor Dillamond.

"It's an absolute dream for any actress to be offered a part like Elphaba, because of the emotional journey the character goes on mixed with the epic songs is just a gift," Amy said ahead of the Liverpool dates.

Wirral Globe:

Amy Ross

"I'm so lucky aswell that I get few of the show’s big numbers.

"Defying Gravity and the underscoring during No Good Deed are real highlights for me to be able to perform.

"It's a song that really has to be acted as well as sung because Elphaba is in emotional turmoil at that point, so it's great to be able to act it out night-after-night.

"The live orchestra, too, just make the songs sound so huge."

This production features 350 stunning costumes, 140 wigs, 244 pairs of shoes, 110 hats, 125 pairs of gloves and 30 prosthetic masks.

It takes 100 people, both on-stage and behind the scenes, to deliver every single performance of this gigantic touring production.

No mean feat to stage, then, and no small matter to appear in either.

As it was for most people, Wicked was familiar to Amy ahead of her landing the part.

She said: "It was the big new Broadway musical everyone was talking about when I was at college and everybody was listening to the soundtrack CD constantly.

"When it came to the West End, I got myself a ticket as soon as I could and saw the original cast perform, which was really exciting.

"You don't ever entirely get the full scale of any show from a CD, so being able to piece everything together was a real thrill, just to see how everything gels together.

"Since then I've had friends appearing in it so I've managed to catch it a few times now, but watching it and actually being in it are worlds apart!

"Everything about it is massive, too, and the attention to detail and the care everybody puts in is just phenomenal.

"For example, my Wicked Witch of the West dress. When you’re looking up at the stage from the seats, audiences will just think its a beautiful black dress.

"In actuality, though, there are 40 yards of material consisting of 50 different fabrics in that one costume.

"There are purples and greens and blues running right the way through it and it took three weeks just to make the bodice!

"For the real eagle eyes in the audience, the Munchkins have coats with the word ‘Oz’ stitched into the fabric in tiny detail, while even the lace eyes of their boots and the buckles of their belts are shaped into the word 'Oz'. And those coats, boy, are they heavy!" Amy gasped.

"Now we're coming into warmer temperatures, those coats beat any diet or fitness regime hands down!"

So far the tour of Wicked has taken in venues across the UK and Ireland, having toured the world to huge acclaim since hitting the road for the first time in 2013.

It is already the 17th longest running show in West End theatre history and recently celebrated a decade of performances at London's Apollo Victoria Theatre, where it continues an open-ended run.

Is the touring aspect something Amy enjoys?

"It's a double-edged thing in a way," she says honestly.

"I'm married and was in the West End for four years so really settled and, of course, it's lovely to be at home when you're working.

"However there was absolutely no way I'd ever turn down an opportunity to play a role like Elphaba in a show like Wicked.

"What is really nice about moving around is that it keeps the show fresh.

"Putting on the exact same show at different theatres is never the case.

"Audiences respond differently to different parts of the show.

"The sizes of the theatres and the stages themselves all differ. Even the backstage traffic is different - bearing in mind how many people work off stage as well as on.

"It's all an amazing experience to be a part of. Yes I miss being at home, but I wouldn't swap being a part of the Wicked tour for anything.

"I'm really looking forward to coming back to Liverpool, too. I’ve played there three times before and I love the people, the culture of the place and, of course, the fabulous shopping it has.

"The Empire Theatre is awesome to perform in ... it's just so big! It's great as an actor to be playing in houses of that size.

"You can really hear it coming back at you from the seats."

Wicked is at Liverpool’s Empire Theatre between March 7 and March 31.