Thursday, March 22, 2012

Annie Jr.

Annie Jr. was presented last week on Friday night and again on Saturday afternoon.  I took some pictures during the Friday night performance, figuring that as far as pictures go I'd get the majority of them on Saturday after I'd gotten a feel for what shots I wanted to get, where the action was placed on stage, etc.  Also, there was a Very Tall Person in front of me on Friday night (this person was accompanying a family member in a wheelchair, so really needed to sit there, so although I didn't begrudge them the seat it was still unfortunate).

But, alas, on Saturday a big storm went through and the power went out 30 minutes before showtime.  Various phone calls revealed that the power company wouldn't guarantee power any time for the next 3.5 hours.  So the cast and crew dragged the set pieces out to the lobby where there was a little ambient light depending on the cloud cover, audience members set up folding chairs, and they started performing sans power.  Which meant no mikes, which for some of the performers (like Annie herself) meant that if you were more than about 10 feet from them you couldn't hear them (this is never an issue with our family -- we're the ones who go without mikes if there's some sort of shortage since we're all loud enough anyway).  Also, the music was being played through an iPod put in some sort of battery-operated speaker system someone had, which made it very hard to hear also.  They ended up turning it off during Hard Knock Life since the kids couldn't hear it to know if they were on beat.  One of the stronger chorus members has excellent pitch and rhythm, and thankfully the entire chorus deferred to her lead. 

Then during intermission, voila, power came back on.  So everything was dragged BACK into the theater, and the kids resumed Act 2 in the theater.  But, really, everyone was sort of off their game ... it was sort of like going to a sporting event and having an unexpected delay, and trying to get back into the mindset.  And Annabeth didn't bother turning on her mike when they got back into the theater, and no one other than people on soundboard really noticed because she was just that loud.

But, anyway, in all the pandemonium I didn't really get that many photos, and didn't record any of the songs.  The shots I took in the lobby were really horrendous.  And when we got back to the theater we sat in random seats, and frankly I forgot about taking pictures.

I have this vague memory that when Annie, Jr. was cast the director wasn't sure Annabeth would be able to portray a mean character like Miss Hannigan.  After all, her main roles so far at this place had been Mary Poppins and Dorothy Gale.  But I think she did fine with the range of emotion that Miss Hannigan portrays while singing and speaking.  Also, where the heck did she pick up that East Coast accent with the world-weary tone?  She did a great job.

By the way, although this was ostensibly Annie Jr., the director added in some things from the original stage play that she thought helped the flow of the production since the "Junior" version cuts out so much as to make some of the scenes almost nonsensical.  Also they used a real dog, unlike most Annie Jr productions -- a very well-trained bichon frise.

Since I had few pictures myself, particularly of Miss Hannigan without other kids around, I've swiped some off of the Tech Director's facebook  pictures of one of the dress rehearsals.  Which is why Miss Hannigan's hairstuyle might vary.

Little Girls -- wow, she had quite the expressions during this.

Very poignant here while listening to the radio - click to enlarge, if desired.

Lily and Rooster are in wigs and a mustache, so pretty well disguised for a blog post.

Also featuring Thalia on crew, shown here messing around with Pres. Roosevelt's wheelchair.

1 comment:

KPCL Girl said...

Ah. I wish we lived closer.

The nightmare of the power failure...shudder.

Chuckle. Annabeth looks absolutely crazed in the second photo. Wish I could have seen it. Wish I had your girls in KidsPlay.