After attending the dress rehearsal of the junior high version of Annie last night, it is obvious that the actors as well as the directors put a lot of time and effort into putting the play together. The end result is a family-friendly, heartwarming musical that will take the audience away. Of course there are minor technical difficulties, but they are not major. The only problem the show might have is the time needed for set changes, but even that is not too bad, considering that the set is detailed and beautiful to look at, and you can see that they put a lot of thought into its creation. The musical is approximately one and a half hours long and will be performed in the auditorium.
Besides the direction of Brian Pekovitch and the musical direction of Erika Dowd, the show also had a student director help with developing the play. Sadie Scott, a sophomore at Meridian High School. Not only did she help the actors with her experience from her previous play Ghost: The Musical, where Scott played the role of Oda Mae Brown, simply nailing her performance, but she also created the choreography for the songs. And her hard work shows off. The play is full of quirky and witty dance numbers, that are nice to watch and give the play a unique touch. It is easy to see that Scott put a lot of her heart and spare time into helping with this play, and her work is greatly appreciated.
For readers who have never heard of the musical, it is based around the young orphan Annie (Ellie Fitzgerald), who has spent all her life in an orphanage under the supervision of cruel and alcoholic Miss Hannigan (Hallie Gates), who makes Annie and her fellow orphans clean up the orphanage and treats them like workers. After a series of events, Annie is taken in by billionaire Oliver Warbucks (Tryston Weiss) for a week. What comes next is a mixture of crime, desperation and even love. If you want to find out how those elements play together, purchase a ticket and see for yourself.
One of the highlights of the show though, would be Hallie Gates’ performance as Miss Hannigan. Not only does she deliver a fantastic performance, she also manages to be convincing in her acting and entertain the audience. Another fan favorite might be the orphans, who delivered a great performance, including singing, bickering, and most of the dance numbers. But also the rest of the cast did a good job with presenting their characters on stage, and contributing to the play to make it what it is now. They all have a lot of energy and a visible enthusiasm for the play.
If you want to be taken away to a life in the 1920’s or want to see your favorite musical put on stage, Annie Jr. will be performed two nights on February 24 and 25, both nights at seven p.m. and tickets vary from 3$ per adult to 1$ for seniors (students are 2$). Don’t miss out or you will regret it later!