caption= Original Broadway Windowcard
Harold Gray comic strip" Little Orphan Annie"
productions= 1977 Broadway
1978 West End
1978 North American Tour
1978 US Tour
1979 US Tour
1981 US Tour
1983 West End
1997 Broadway revival
1998 West End
2000 UK tour
2005 US Tour
Tony Award for Best Musical
Tony Award for Best Original Score
Tony Award for Best Book
"Annie" is a musical based upon the popular
Harold Gray comic strip" Little Orphan Annie", with music by Charles Strouse, lyrics by Martin Charnin, and the book by Thomas Meehan. The musical ran for nearly six years on Broadway, spawned numerous productions in many countries, as well as national tours, and won the Tony Award for Best Musical. The musical's songs "Tomorrow" and "It's the Hard-Knock Life" are its most popular pieces.
Eleven-year-old Annie is in an orphanage, presided over by Miss Hannigan, who keeps the little girl orphans in line by bullying and threatening them. The girls are ever hopeful that they will find parents and happiness ("Maybe") while Miss Hannigan is unhappy with her situation. Annie decides to escape to find her parents, running into a friendly dog (Sandy) ("Tomorrow") and the people made homeless because of the
Great Depression("We'd Like To Thank You, Herbert Hoover"). However, she is returned to the orphanage. Grace Farrell, Warbucks' assistant, picks her to live in Oliver "Daddy" Warbucks' palatial home for the Christmas holidays ("I Think I'm Gonna Like it Here").
Although initially uncomfortable with each other, Annie and Daddy Warbucks soon come to love each other (You Won't Be An Orphan For Long). Warbucks wants to adopt her, but Annie insists that her parents will come for her. Over the radio show of Bert Healy, and with the help of President and Mrs. Roosevelt, Warbucks offers a reward for the parents ("You're Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile"). Miss Hannigan and her brother, Rooster, and his slightly ditzy girlfriend, Lily St. Regis, scheme to pretend to be the parents and collect the reward ("Easy Street"). When they are found out, it is revealed that Annie's parents have died. Warbucks and Annie become a family ("I Don't Need Anything But You").
;Pre-Broadway Tryout"Annie" had its World premiere on
August 10, 1976at the Goodspeed Opera Housein East Haddam, Connecticut. Kristin Vigardwas the first actress to play the title role. However, the producers soon decided that Vigard's genuinely sweet interpretation was not tough enough for the street-smart orphan. After a week of performances, Vigard was replaced by Andrea McArdle, who played one of the other orphans. Vigard went on to become McArdle's Broadway understudy.
;BroadwayThe original Broadway production opened at the
Alvin Theatreon April 21, 1977 and starred Andrea McArdleas Annie, Reid Sheltonas Daddy Warbucks, Dorothy Loudonas Miss Hannigan, and Sandy Faisonas Grace Farrell. It was nominated for 11 Tony Awardsand won 7, including Best Musical, Best Score, and Best Book. Replacements for McArdle in the lead role included then- child actors Shelley Bruce, Sarah Jessica Parker, Allison Smith, and Alyson Kirk.
The show closed on
January 2, 1983and ran for a total of 2,377 performances.
;London productionsIn 1978, a London cast of "Annie" opened at the
Victoria Palace Theatre, in the West End of London, on May 3. Though Andrea McArdleplayed the title role for 40 performances, British 12-year-old Ann Marie Gwatkin was also cast in the title role and appeared on the Original London cast recording. Miss Hannigan was played by Sheila Hancock, and Daddy Warbucks was played by Stratford Johns(later by Charles West).
"Annie" closed on
28 November 1981, after 1485 performances, and immediately transferred to the Bristol Hippodromefor a special Christmas seasonbefore touring Britain. Because of strict British employment laws for juvenile actors, a succession of actresses took on the lead role every four months, including Claudia Bradley from Leeds, who later appeared in Starlight Express, as the understudy to Pearl. Claudia was featured, at the age of 10, on a 1981 BBC programme called Fame, narrated by John Pitman, when she first won the role of Annie. She was one of the last girls to perform the role at the Victoria Palace before the show went on tour.
The show was later revived at the Victoria Palace, running from
30 September 1998to 28 February 1999. It starred Lily Savage(the female alter ego of comedian Paul O'Grady) as Miss Hannigan.
;United States National touring companiesDuring the Broadway run of "Annie", there were four touring companies that were launched from the original production to bring the to show to major U.S. cities.:
The 1st National Touring Company of "Annie" opened in Toronto in March 1978 with Kathy-Jo Kelly in the title role. After playing a few more cities, it landed in Chicago where it played for 32 weeks before continuing on the road in April 1979 with Mary K. Lombardi as Annie. In the fall of 1980, Theda Stemler took over the part and was replaced in Boston when she grew too old. On
May 15, 1981, Louanne Sirota, who had played Annie in the long-running Los Angeles production (see below), took over the role for four months. In August 1981, Becky Snyder became the company's last Annie, closing the tour on September 6, 1981.
The 2nd National Touring Company (sometimes referred to as the West Coast or Los Angeles Production) opened in San Francisco on
June 22, 1978with Patricia Ann Patts starring as Annie and the then-unknown Molly Ringwaldplaying one of the orphans. The show landed in Los Angeles on October 15, 1978for an open-ended run at the Shubert Theatre. On June 12, 1979, Louanne, just 9 yrs old (up until that time, all Annies had been 11 yrs old), took over the role from Patts. Marisa Morell replaced Louanne when she left to star in "Oh, God! Book II" in December 1979. Marisa closed the Los Angeles run and took it on the road continuing with the show through December 1980. In December 1980, Kristi Coombs replaced Morell and played Annie until this touring company closed in Philadelphia on January 23, 1982.
The 3rd National Touring Company of "Annie" was launched in Dallas on
October 3, 1979with Roseanne Sorrentino in the title role. This company toured to 23 cities playing mostly shorter runs of a month or less. On March 27, 1981, Bridget Walsh took over for Sorrentino. Becky Snyder (who had closed the 1st National Tour) joined this company in the summer of 1982 and stayed with it until it closed in September of that year.
The 4th National Touring Company of "Annie" opened on
September 11, 1981with Mollie Hall playing Annie. This production was a "bus and truck" tour, with a slightly reduced cast, that traveled the country often playing in two cities a week. This company was still touring when the original Broadway production closed in January 1983, making Kathleen Sisk the final performer to play Annie from the original production team. This final production closed in September 1983.
;Stage sequelsThe first attempt at a
sequel, "Annie 2: Miss Hannigan's Revenge", opened at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Artsin Washington, D.C.in December 1989 to universally disastrous reviews. Extensive reworking of the script and score proved futile, and the project was aborted before reaching Broadway. In 1993, a second attempt (with a completely different plot and score), entitled " Annie Warbucks", opened at the off-Broadway Variety Arts Theatre, where it ran for 200 performances.
;Broadway revivalA 20th anniversary Broadway revival in 1997 starred
Nell Carter, and later Sally Struthers, as Miss Hannigan, but controversy surrounded the casting of the titular character. The original actress cast in the role, Joanna Pacitti, was fired and replaced by her understudy, Brittny Kissinger [ [http://www.brittnykissinger.com/home.html Information at BrittnyKissinger.com] ] (who usually played July) while battling bronchitis. Public sentiment seemed to side with Pacitti as she was the winner of a highly-publicized contest to find a new Annie sponsored by the department store Macy's. This incident, coupled with the mixed reviews the new staging garnered, doomed it to a short run, although it was followed by a successful national tour. The orphans on the pre-broadway national tour and during the Broadway run were played by Christiana Anbri, age 6, from New York City, who played "Molly"; Melissa O'Malley, who played "Kate"; Lindsey Watkins, age 9, from New Haven, who played "Tessie"; Mackenzie Rosen-Stone, age 9, from New York City, who played "Duffy"; Casey Tuma, age ten, from New Jersey, replaced Kissinger as "July"; Cassidy Ladden, age eleven, from Manhattan, who played "Pepper"; and Alexandra Keisman as the orphan swing/Annie understudy. Kissinger, then 8, became the youngest actress to ever play Annie on Broadway.
In the revival, a black miniature poodle named Dartanian played a small part when he ran across in the stage during Act I of the play to be caught by an actor playing a dog catcher. During intermission, an announcement was made to the crowd saying that the dog had been abused by his previous owners and was found wandering the streets of New York City. The announcement then said that the dog was being put up for adoption. Many people went backstage after the show to sign adoption papers for the dog, and after the running of the show, the pound in possession of Dartanian selected a family from Westchester, NY to adopt him. The family changed his name to DC, who is still living in Westchester with this family.
;1999-2000 United States tourStarting in August 1999, the post Broadway National Tour continued with Meredith Ann Bull as Annie, Melissa Rocko playing July, Gianna Belino playing Molly, Katherine Young playing Kate, Ashley Wieronski playing Duffy, and Nina Ducharme playing Tessie, and Tracey Brancifort playing Pepper. In the spring of 2000, a few new 'orphans' took over, and Ashley Weironski moved up to play Annie, while Blaire Restaneo played Molly, Jessica Peters played Tessie, Amy Scheff played July, Tracey Brancifort played Pepper and Melissa Rocco moved on to play Duffy understudying Annie. Amelia Millar was the swing orphan.
In July 2000, Dana Benedict replaced Ashley Weironski as Annie, Jewel Restaneo replaced Mellissa Rocco as Duffy. Daniella Alswang replaced Katherine Young as Kate, Kallie Flynn Childress replaced Jessica Peters as Tessie, while Blaire Restaneo, Amy Scheff, and Tracey Brancifort remained as their roles of Molly, July, and Pepper.
;2005-07 United States tourStarting in 2005, a 30th anniversary traveling production of "Annie" by Networks Tours embarked on a multi-city tour. Due to its popularity, the tour's initial 11-month run was extended into 2007. This production is directed by
Martin Charninand stars Conrad John Schuck as Daddy Warbucks, Alene Robertson as Miss Hannigan, and Marissa O'Donnellas Annie.
For the first year of the tour, Annie was played by Marissa O'Donnell,
Lindsay Ryanplayed Molly, Molly Ryanplayed Duffy and understudy of Molly. Stevani Weaver played Kate and understudy of Annie, Casey Whylandplayed Tessie, Taylor Bright played July, and Brittany Portmanplayed Pepper. Throughout the show, there were a couple of replacements. Amanda Balontook the place of Lindsay Ryan as Molly, and McCall Montz took the place of Molly Ryan as Duffy and U.S. of Molly. Eventually, Jocelyn Chmielewskitook the place of McCall Montz as Duffy and understudy of Molly, and Delaney Moro took the place of Stevani Weaver as Kate and understudy of Annie.
For the 2nd year of the tour, Annie was played by Marissa O'Donnell again,
Amanda Balonmoved up to the role of Duffy and understudy of Molly and second understudy of Annie, Anastasia Korbalplayed Molly, Gabi Nicole Carrubaplayed Kate and understudy of Annie, Brandy Panfiliplayed Tessie, NicKayla Tucker played July, [ [http://nextgenkids.com Information from NextGenKids.com] ] and Madison Zavitz played Pepper.
This Equity Tour closed on
March 25, 2007, at the Hippodrome Theatrein Baltimore, MD. Marissa O'Donnell turned down offers from United Kingdom tour producers to continue as Annie in their 2007 production.
The 2008-09 cast for the Non-Equity tour is : Amanda Balon moved up to play Annie, Molly will be played by Annalisa DiBernardo, Duffy will be played by Marina Marcherone, Tessie will be played by Abby Spare, Kate by Grace Etzkorn, July by Jaida Benjamin, and Madison Zavitz will be playing Pepper again. [ [http://www.annieontour.com/main.html anieontour information of the 2008-09 tour] ]
;UK TourIn 2001 the production had a one-month run at The Theatre Royal in Lincoln with 11 year old Kate Winney in the role of Annie on the opening night. Also with Jemma Carlisle(alternate Annie), Louise English (Grace), Vicki Michelle (Hannigan) and Simon Masterton-Smith (Warbucks). The show proved to be a success, touring from 2001-2007 and resuming in September 2008. [ [http://www.theatre4u.co.uk/annie/index.htm "Annie" UK 2008 tour information]
;International productions"Annie" has been produced professionally in
Argentina(19821), Australia(19791, 2000), Denmark(Unknown Year), Germany(1999), Hungary(1998), Israel(20011), Italy(2006), Japan(1979-2008)2, United Kingdom(19781, 1983, 1998, Tours from 2000-2007), Mexico(19791), Netherlands(19971, 20051), Norway(19911, 20041), Philippines(Unknown Year), Portugal(19831), Spain(19821, 20011), Sweden(1999, 20061), Zimbabwe(2003)
1Indicates the production made an official cast recording.
²In Japan, a special demo recording of selected songs is made each year, with the new actress playing Annie.
*Overture — Orchestra
*Maybe — Annie & Orphans
*It's the Hard Knock Life — Annie & Orphans
*It's the Hard Knock Life (Reprise) — Orphans
*Tomorrow — Annie
*We'd Like to Thank You Herbert Hoover — Hooverville-ites & Annie
*Little Girls — Miss Hannigan
*Little Girls (Reprise) — Miss Hannigan
*I Think I'm Gonna Like It Here — Grace, Annie & Servants
*N.Y.C. — Warbucks, Grace, Annie, Star-to-Be, Chorus
*Easy Street — Rooster, Miss Hannigan, Lily
*Why Should I Change a Thing? — Warbucks**
*You Won't Be an Orphan for Long — Grace, Drake, Servants, Annie, Warbucks
*Maybe (Reprise) — Annie;Act 2
*Entr'acte — Orchestra
*Maybe (Reprise) — Annie
*You're Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile — Bert Healy, Boylan Sisters
*You're Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile (Children) — Orphans
*Easy Street (Reprise) — Rooster, Miss Hannigan, Lily
*Tomorrow (Cabinet Reprise) — Annie, Roosevelt, Warbucks, Cabinet
*Something Was Missing — Warbucks
*I Don't Need Anything But You — Warbucks, Annie, Grace, Drake, Servants
*Annie — Grace, Drake & Servants
*Maybe (Reprise) — Annie
*New Deal for Christmas — Warbucks, Grace, Annie, Roosevelt, Servants, Orphans
*Bows — All
*Exit Music — Orchestra
"**Added in 2000 when the script was revised for the Australian production [ [http://www.entertainmentstore.com.au/engine/SID/1000083/AID/100510.htm Information from Australian "EntertainmentStore.com"] ]
The Original Broadway Cast recording was released in 1977; a CD containing bonus tracks was released on
September 15, 1998by Sony (ASIN: B00000AG6Z).
A 30th anniversary cast recording was released on
June 3, 2008on Time Life Records. Album producer Robert Sherhas assembled an all-star cast of former "Annie" cast members, including Carol Burnett, Sally Struthers, Kathie Lee Gifford, Andrea McArdle, Conrad John Schuck, Harve Presnell, Gary Beach, Marissa O'Donnelland Amanda Balon. The rest of the cast is made up of the members of the 30th Anniversary Tour. This recording is a double CD set and includes the entire show as it is performed now on the first disk. The second disk includes songs from the sequel to Annie, "Annie 2: Miss Hannigan's Revenge" as well as songs that were cut from or added to the original production. There is also a song from the 1977 Annie Christmas special. The booklet is made up of original drawings by Philo Barnhart, who is the creator of the characters of Ariel and Ursula of "The Little Mermaid", and is presented in a comic book style. [ [http://www.playbill.com/news/article/118230.html playbill article] ]
Film and television
Columbia Picturesfilm was released in 1982, with Albert Finneystarring as Daddy Warbucks, Carol Burnettas Miss Hannigan, Ann Reinkingas Grace Farrell, Tim Curryas Rooster, Bernadette Petersas Lily, and Aileen Quinnas Annie. A sequelto the 1982 movie, "Annie: A Royal Adventure!" was made for television in 1995. The sequel starred Ashley Johnson, Joan Collins, George Hearnand Ian McDiarmid. Aside from a reprise of "Tomorrow", there are no songs in the sequel.
A made-for-TV "Wonderful World of Disney" movie version, produced by
The Walt Disney Company, was broadcast in 1999; it starred Victor Garberas Daddy Warbucks, Kathy Batesas Miss Hannigan, Audra McDonaldas Grace Farrell, Alan Cummingas Rooster, Kristin Chenowethas Lily, and newcomer Alicia Mortonas Annie.
A documentary film, "Life After Tomorrow", was directed and produced by one of the original Broadway and National Tour orphans,
Julie Stevensand partner, Gil Cates, Jr. The film reunites more than 40 women who played orphans in the Broadway show “Annie” and reveals the highs and lows of their experiences as child actresses in a cultural phenomenon. The film premiered on Showtimeand will be released by Arts Alliance Americaon DVD in early 2008.
Pop culture references
"Annie's" popularity is reflected in its numerous mentions in popular media. References to the show appear in films such as "", where Dr. Evil and Mini-Me lip-synch and perform the song 'It's The Hard Knock Life For Us' with the original soundtrack playing off-camera; and in the 1994 John Waters black comedy "
Serial Mom", where a woman is bludgeoned to death with a leg of muttonby the titular serial killer while watching the 1982 film of "Annie" and singing along. "Annie" is parodied in "Reefer Madness", where President Franklin D. Rooseveltshows up as the " deus ex machina" at the end of the satirical musical to tell the assembled crowd, "A little orphan girl once told me that the sun would come out tomorrow. Her adopted father was a powerful billionaire, so I suppressed the urge to laugh in her face, but now, by gum, I think she may have been on to something!"
References in television series include "
Zoey 101", where Marc wants the school production changed to "Annie"; " Full House", where Stephanie Tannersings the song in several episodes; the " Family Guy" episode " Peter, Peter, Caviar Eater" (1999), where the Griffin family inherits a luxury mansion, and the staff puts on a large-scale production number spoofing the song "I Think I'm Gonna Like it Here". The same song is also spoofed in the " Drawn Together" episode " Alzheimer's That Ends Well". In the first episode of " Boston Legal", Alan Shore representes a black girl who was not hired as Annie in the national tour, and wins the case with the help of Al Sharpton. In the " South Park" episode " Ginger Kids", Eric Cartmanand his group of Ginger Supremacists protest against Annie being played by a non-freckled, non-red-haired girl. In " 30 Rock", Liz Lemon is discovered in her office after hours listening to music on her headset and singing "Maybe."
The song "Tomorrow" is sung in many media references, including by Joe's aunt in a scene in the movie "
You've Got Mail"; in "Dave", by Kevin Klineand Sigourney Weaver; by Lewis on " The Drew Carey Show"; by Jane Krakowskiin the fourth season of " Ally McBeal"; in " Roseanne", by Darlene and Becky; in " Friends", by Chandler Bing, who has two copies of the "Annie" soundtrack (season eight's episode "The One With The Tea Leaves"); by Reese Witherspoonin "Just Like Heaven"; by Donkey in the CGI movie " Shrek II" (although he passes out halfway through the second line); in a commercial for Lowe'sHardware promoting their next-day delivery; by contestant Teresa Cooper on an episode of ""; in a " Duel Masters" episode, it is recited by Shobu; by Marta in " School Of Rock"; in " Like Mike", by a couple hoping to be Calvin's adoptive parents; and in " Addams Family Values". In the " Ugly Betty" episode " Loss the Boss" the song can be heard playing in the bedroom of Justin Suarezafter he was sent there for fighting in school. Pastiche versions of the song are sung in the Disney theme park attraction " It's Tough to be a Bug!" and in the Rooms To Go next-day delivery ad campaign. The long-running Broadway parody production of " Forbidden Broadway" took up "Tomorrow" as sung by an adult Annie ("I'm thirty years old . . . tomorrow") pleading for a sequel to the original musical.
Other prominent media references include the following:
Jay-Zmade heavy use of samples from the Broadway cast album's version of "It's the Hard-Knock Life" in his single "It's the Hard Knock Life (Ghetto Anthem)". In turn, Jay-Z's take was also parodied by Sudden Death with their song "Star Trek Life" from their album "Die Laughing".
* The newly-formed
NFL Networkproduced two Super Bowl ads in 2004 and 2005 featuring "Tomorrow." A series of football celebrities who were retired or didn't make it to that year's Super Bowl would sing the song, ending with the caption, "...Tomorrow, we're all undefeated again." [ [http://www.nfl.com/nflnetwork/story/7043746] [http://www.ifilm.com/superbowl/2004 2004 Super Bowl ad at nflnetwork] ] [ [http://www.ifilm.com/superbowl/2005 2005 Super Bowl ad at ifilm.com] ]
*In the videogame "
Grand Theft Auto III", a parodyposter reminiscent of "Annie" can be seen in certain parts of Liberty City.
* [http://www.ibdb.com/production.asp?ID=3996 Internet Broadway Database link for "Annie"]
* [http://www.mtishows.com/show_home.asp?ID=000005 MTI Shows listing]
* [http://www.musicaltheatreaudition.com/shows/annie.html "Annie" audition research resource from Musical Theatre Audition]
* [http://stageagent.com/Shows/View/719 "Annie" plot summary & character descriptions from Stage Agent]
* [http://www.annieorphans.com/ Annieorphans.com - Official website for former "Annie" cast members and fans]
* [http://www.lifeaftertomorrow.com/ Life After Tomorrow.com - Official website for the film "Life After Tomorrow"]
* [http://www.annieontour.com/ 2005-2007 "Annie" Tour official site]
* [http://www.annietour.com/ 2005-2007 "Annie" Tour unofficial site]
Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Musical
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