Since 1977, little orphan Annie has delighted audiences in the theatre and on screen, most recently in the modernized adaptation that came out last year. Now long time fans and newly introduced Annie lovers have the chance to watch the stage version. The look and feel of the show is familiar, but that does not make this much watched piece stale, as the important elements still touch audiences as the beloved tale is told again.
Annie’s journey begins in the orphanage where she lives with a group of other girls around her age and Miss Hannigan (Lynn Andrews), the drunken absurd woman who takes care of the girls, or is supposed to. For the holidays, Annie gets the opportunity of
a lifetime to visit the home of Mr. Warbucks (Gilgamesh Taggett), local billionaire who doesn’t give much thought to his personal life but slowly has his heart warmed by the lovable redhead.
Most notably, the children of Annie shine in this Broadway in Austin performance which will continue at Bass Concert Hall through the weekend. The show includes some of the most fun, heartwarming songs that everyone loves from the original like “It’s A Hard Knock Life,” “Tomorrow” and “Maybe.” While the recent film modernized the tale, this version sticks to the standard book.
It may seems that the depression era story has little relevance to the people of today. However, some parallels are still there to the modern economic difficulties. Ever the optimist, Annie brings her light to all the characters she touches and truly convinces audiences that she is the kind of orphan any billionaire would want to adopt.
Early on, the audience realizes that the kids are the stars of this show, most especially Annie played by Issie Swickle and a few of the other orphans like Lilly Mae Stewart, who steals her scenes as the littlest orphan of the bunch. Unsurprisingly, the greatest crowd pleaser is Sandy played by a terrier mix named Sunny. Everything from the streets to the orphanage and even Warbucks’ mansion feels old fashioned and appropriate for the time. Annie and her friends spend most of the show in rags but their dresses also give the feel of iconic 30s garb.
Audiences, made up of a number of little ones some dressed as Annie themselves, cheered for her throughout the show. By the end, everyone applauded the entire cast and orchestra, with special attention shown to highlights like Lynn Andrews whose hilarious portrayal of Miss Hannigan won her the appreciation of attendees. Annie allows all to appreciate her optimism and spunk during this Broadway Across America show.
WHEN: Through April 26
Bass Concert Hall
2350 Robert Dedman Dr
TICKETS: Please click here to purchase tickets.