Leapin' lizards, the popular comic strip heroine Little Orphan Annie takes centre stage in January in one of the world's best-loved musicals.
The Chilliwack School of Performing Arts presents Annie from Jan. 9 to 20 at the Chilliwack Cultural Centre.
With equal measures of pluck and positivity, Annie charms everyone's hearts, despite a next-to-nothing start in 1930s New York City. She is determined to find her parents, who abandoned her years ago on the doorstep of an orphanage run by the cruel, embittered Miss Hannigan. With the help of the other girls in the orphanage, Annie escapes to the wondrous and magical world of New York City.
In adventure after fun-filled adventure, Annie foils Miss Hannigan's evil machinations and befriends President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. She finds a new home and family in billionaire Oliver Warbucks, his personal secretary Grace Farrell and a lovable mutt named Sandy. Annie is the perfect family-friendly musical.
Annie originally opened on Broadway in 1977 and ran for an astonishing 2,377 performances. It was nominated for 11 Tony Awards that year, and won seven, including best choreography, best costume design, best original score, best book and best musical. It was inspired by Harold Gray's Little Orphan Annie comic strip, which premiered in the New York Daily News in 1924.
Little Orphan Annie will be played by CSOPA sophomore Avi-anna Clempson. Grace Farrell by Kate Fairley and Oliver Warbucks by Abbotsford resident Arne Larsen. Kessia Warren will take on the role of Miss Hannigan, while Rooster and Lily will be played by Max Glover and Carmen Sigurdson.
The roles of the other orphan girls will be portrayed by Adrienne Reitsma, Meghan Mindel, Andrea Arce, Olivia Moniz, Kirsten MacDonald and Melyn-da Nadon. Hannah deNevers will take on the head maid, Mrs. Drake, while Jonathan Woyke will play President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Rounding out the rest of the cast are Caylen Braun, Brandon Grove, Hailey Hanson, Kathryn Harder, Hyacinthe Lithgow, Jordan Orto, Josh Robinson, Olivia Simpson, Sebastian Warkentin-Scott and Jessica Westeringh.
Andrew Smith directs, Lisa Zimmer is musical director and Trischa Buhler the orchestra director while Shelley Wojcik is the choreographer. Set by Tara Arnett, costumes by Heather Westergard and lights by Jamea Lister.
? Annie opens on Jan. 9 and runs until Jan. 20. Evening performances are at 7: 30 p.m. Jan. 9, 10, 11, 12, 17, 18, 19. Matinee performances at 2 p.m. on Jan. 12, 13, 19 and 20. Tickets are $20 for adults, $15 for students and seniors. All seats on Jan. 9 and 10 (evening) and Jan. 12 (matinee) are $9.75. Tickets can be purchased by calling the centre box office at 604-391SHOW (7469) or by visiting www.chilliwackculturalcentre.ca.