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ANNIE! (article first published : 2007-06-18)

Annie - the evergreen family musical based on the cartoon strip of Little Orphan Annie will be the next in the impressive long line of musicals under the banner of the Unilever Young Performers Project which keeps a host of talented youngsters occupied during the July school holidays.

Annie project follows the last six successful Unilever Young Performers Musicals, Curtain Up, One Voice, Grease, Oliver, Fiddler on the Roofand last year’s The Wiz.

A visionary project masterminded by Linda van der Veen from Snazzi Events and supported by Unilever, The Unilever Young Performers Project utilises a cast of high school aspirant performers.

The show, however, is managed professionally on every level – using a professional venue, director and production team to give the youngsters a taste of life in the professional world of showbiz. This year it will be directed by Charon Williams Ros, with design by Charon Williams Ros and Peter Court, lighting design by Brandon Bunyan and choreography by Janet Hare. Musical Direction is by Dawn Selby who heads a live five-piece band.

The appealing story revolves around tenacious youngster, 11 year-old Annie. As a baby, she was left on the steps of a New York orphanage with a note and half a locket. Little Annie flees the orphanage (and the grumpy, scheming matron Miss Hannigan) in search of her parents. Together with Sandy – a larger-than-life stray dog, she takes shelter with some ‘down-and-outs’ until Annie is returned to the orphanage. However, Grace Farell, secretary to billionaire businessman Oliver Warbucks, saves Annie from Miss Hannigan’s wrath by hosting her for the Christmas holidays at the Warbucks mansion.

An adventure ensures during which she gets to meet the President in the White House. As a result of a much publicized reward to find Annie’s parents, a host of imposters are encountered – but it all ends happy ever after!

Annie runs at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre from July 6 to 22. Booking is through Computicket.




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