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Cottonwood Heights Art Council stages ‘Annie’

Jul 25, 2017 10:53AM ● Published by Kelly Cannon

Madeline Best as Annie and Rohit Raghavan as Daddy Warbucks in Cottonwood Heights Art Council’s “Annie.” (Kristen Pedersen)

Gallery: Cottonwood Heights Art Council stages ‘Annie’ [3 Images] Click any image to expand.

By Shaun Delliskave | s.delliskave@mycityjournals.com
 
Bet your bottom dollar that you can’t finish the phrase “the sun will come out” with any word other than “tomorrow.” If you can, consider attending the Cottonwood Heights Arts Council’s production of “Annie” to acquaint yourself with the signature tune of the hit Broadway play.
 
“Annie,” the uplifting story inspired by the 1924 comic strip “Little Orphan Annie” will be performed at Butler Middle School. The endearing musical opens on July 28 and runs through August 5.
 
According to Cottonwood Heights Arts Council Production Manager Kimberly Pedersen, “‘Annie’ is a beloved play by many, and considered a classic. Cottonwood Heights Arts Council wanted to do ‘Annie’ because of the family aspect. ‘Annie’ is a play in which everyone can attend together, but also we are able to get families involved in the cast. We love to be able to do that. When we can involve adults and children together, it really makes it fun!”
 
Set during the Great Depression in 1933, “Annie” is the tale of a young orphan who charms everyone with her pluck. The spunky 11-year-old lives in an orphanage run by the mean Miss Hannigan, who punishes Annie and the other orphans.
 
When a wealthy munitions industrialist named Oliver “Daddy” Warbucks decides to let an orphan live at his home to promote his image, Annie is selected, and her seemingly hopeless situation changes dramatically. Annie charms the hearts of the household staff and even the apparently cold-hearted Warbucks, but she still longs to meet her parents. Warbucks decides to help Annie find her long-lost parents by offering a reward.
 
Miss Hannigan and her evil brother Rooster concoct a scheme to impersonate her parents and get the reward for themselves. Captivating events follow as Annie develops relationships with all kinds of people, including President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, while trying to elude Hannigan.
 
Originally produced on Broadway in 1977, the play ran for nearly six years, setting a record for the Neil Simon Theatre. Nominated for 11 Tony awards, the play won for Best Musical. With music by Charles Strouse and lyrics by Martin Charnin, the songs “Tomorrow” and “It’s the Hard-Knock Life” are among its most popular musical numbers.
 
With ample roles for child actors, many leading actresses got their start in this musical, including Molly Ringwald and Alyssa Milano as orphans, and Sarah Jessica Parker and Allison Smith in the lead role as Annie. For Cottonwood Heights’ production, Madeline Best is cast as Annie. Rounding out the lead roles are Rohit Raghavan as Daddy Warbucks, Marcela Fedderson as Miss Hannigan and Natalie Nielson as Grace Farrell. 
 
“We are excited about this show. The cast is so talented and fantastic and we are sure that this will be a fun show,” said Pedersen.
 
Online ticket sales are available at arts.ch.utah.gov. Pedersen notes, “We are happy to be able to offer a family night ticket on Monday the 31st of July. It’s $45 for two adults and up to five kids (living in the same household). We want this night to be a fun family event, so we plan on having some food trucks and a fun family atmosphere.” Tickets will also be available at the school on the night of the event.
 
Pederson also notes, “We will also sell tickets at Butlerville Days and perform a bit of the show on the stage. Come by and visit the Arts Council booth and buy your tickets and get $1.00 off.”
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