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Curriculum: Annie - The Musical

‘Annie’ ran from 6th – 9th of February and was a spectacular display of music ,dance and drama. With over 200 students involved in the band, cast, making scenery and costumes, make up, set design and technical support each audience was treated to an exciting, professional and energetic performance full of talent and passion. With the involvement of a real dog, the show also had a delightful unpredictability about it!
 
Set in 1930s New York during The Great Depression, brave young Annie is forced to live a life of misery and torment at Miss Hannigan’s orphanage. Determined to find her real parents, her luck changes when she is chosen to spend Christmas at the residence of famous billionaire, Oliver Warbucks. Spiteful Miss Hannigan has other ideas and hatches a plan to spoil Annie’s search…
 
ANNIE the Musical features an award-winning book and score and songs like ‘It’s the Hard Knock Life’, ‘Easy Street’, ‘I Don’t Need Anything But You’ and ‘Tomorrow’.
 
Ms Charleston, Head of Creative Arts, said ‘Our music teacher, Mrs Whomersley, first made the suggestion to perform “Annie” as our school play this year and we all had fond memories of watching the film with our respective children.  So casting began and we had a huge job on our hands with so many talented singers and dancers at Richard Lander School.  We decided to cast two “Annies” which worked well as the girls Saffron Elliot and Caitlin Shaw are in year 7 and Year 8 so they had a night off to rest up.  The Creative Arts Department went straight to work to design our fabulous set with a New York back drop, chandeliers to be lowered for the “Warbucks” mansion and even light boxes to illuminate the street signs at night.  As ever this was a super collaborative process with Music leading the Production band under Mrs Whomersley’s direction and Miss Jones coaching the singers.  The cast of over 100 students were put through their paces by choreographer Millie Light and the Drama Department Mrs Amy Nortje and Ms Lucy Charleston directed the acting scenes. 
 
The cast performed to sell out shows every night.  The whole process of being involved in a school production teaches students to rely on one another as they learn their parts and commit to rehearsals.  It is certainly a tough discipline to act, sing and dance at the same time in front of a live audience. Whether they were back stage or on stage, we hope it is an experience the students will never forget.’
 
If you didn’t manage to get a ticket for ‘Annie’ or you would like to see it again, we are making a DVD which will be available after Easter.
 

Richard Lander School