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Northwest High School Annie

By • Apr 25th, 2012 • Category: Cappies, Missouri

As the light slowly illuminates the orphans sleeping on beds, the well-known story soon unfolds as a rambunctious orphan furiously attempts to find her parents. Annie encounters a slew full of characters that try to hinder her journey to happiness. Northwest’s production of Annie was anchored by the cast and crew as they presented this famous tale of heroism while they searched for “Tomorrow.”

Based off of the Harold Gray comic strip “Little Orphan Annie,” this musical opened on Broadway in 1977 and ran for six years. Annie is an international sensation that has been translalted into several languages around the world, Annie won a Tony for best musical, and is still produced around the nation. Living in a run-down orphanage, Annie soon sets out to find her parents. Yet the hero is soon backtracked until she meets the business tycoon, Oliver “Daddy” Warbucks, who transforms her life.

As the adventurous orphan, Annie, Casey Richards portrayed how difficult Annie’s journey was. Richards brought a childish tone to the character, illustrating how childish Annie was at times. Also, she was able to bring upon a more mature tone in the serious parts of the show. Oliver “Daddy” Warbucks (Matt Arndt) displayed the rough, harsh exterior of Warbucks in songs such as “N.Y.C.” and “Something Was Missing.” Arndt was able to vividly show the contrasting parts of Warbucks as he acted on the stage. There were also some others that stood out as well.

Being the cruel matron of the orphanage, Miss Hannigan (Riley Price), contrasted that of Annie. Price was able to add in humor into a rather malevolent character that lightened the atmosphere during dull parts of the show. Rooster (Brandon Janssen) had comedic timing, and always maintained energy even when others lacked it during certain parts of the show. Janssen’s vocals shined in “Easy Street.” Even when others were not audible at certain parts, Janssen kept a consistent, clear diction that was understood.

From the Orphans to Hooverites, the ensemble shined in such songs as “Hard Knock Life” and “We’d Like to Thank You Herbert Hoover.” In ensemble numbers, the ensemble lacked energy with the choreography; but the ensemble helped vividly tell the story of Annie.

Creating an illuminated stage and helping with sound, the crew was evident in Annie. Throughout the show, there were parts where the actors could not be heard. Yet the sound crew frantically picked up other actors with the use of choir mics. Lighting helped enhance the show with the bright lights used in numbers and the use of contrasting lights. Yet the excess time during set changes digressed from the story.

Northwest’s production of Annie proved that it is a “Hard Knock Life” for orphan Annie.

by Brandon Simpson of Rockwood Summit High School

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