Dutch Annie Production

Alex
Alex

July 13th, 2008, 7:09 pm #1

Hi Everyone,

I thought it was getting a bit hectic around the Dutch Annie posts and decided to post here instead. Although I'm from the UK, this production is my favourite by far and I've looked into it in some detail.

Read these old forum posts of mine (in order) for an overview of what happened.

http://www.network54.com/Forum/82384/me ... tch+Annies-

http://www.network54.com/Forum/82384/me ... nnie+Forum

The forum I link to and describe is basically the tour website- there isn't a proper website or booking page now the tour is over. It explains really well how the unusual group system worked, 10 groups, later reduced to 6, as the girls' show allowance was so small.

The videos you all linked to feature different groups and some are from the 2005/6 tour and some the 2006/7 run at Efteling Theatre, after the groups had been reduced.

Julie's most recent post 'More Dutch Videos' features two of the original 10 groups doing TV appearances, one group using shortened versions of the songs, one not. Another similar one, from later when there were 6 groups, is here, featuring my favourite Annie, Cheyenne.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VMMawPB3FsI

French Girls' 'My Favourites' are an appearance by one Annie, but when that's from it's impossible to tell and a video of the entire reduced cast 2006/7, appearing on a Dutch music awards show.

The first video Julie posted, to ask about the location, is very interesting as whoever made it, made a mistake with it. The photos are a medley from a performance of one of the original 10 groups (Albert's Angels with Jennifer Welts) but the version of Tomorrow which is playing is from a totally different Dutch cast- the cast of the 1997 production 10 years earlier.

Another medley from the 2005/7 version, this time with the right soundtrack can be found here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KcUSW1SIRPw

It shows footage from the premiere of the show, featuring Robin Virgine, who was lucky enough to play Annie on opening night, with her orphan group, Gesellige Donders.

Robin also played Annie in the very last show, with her Efteling group, De Anniemals, none of whom, ironically, she performed with in the very first show. At the end of the show, all of the other Efteling orphans and the other 5 Annies, who had done their last shows a few days before, came on stage for the curtain.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0CYczN7R ... re=related

Alex
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CindyS
CindyS

July 14th, 2008, 4:04 pm #2

Does anybody know how old some of these girls are? They look considerably older than some of our Annies here in the USA. Cheyenne looks about the youngest, imho.
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Alex
Alex

July 14th, 2008, 8:22 pm #3

Hi CindyS,

Yes, many of the Dutch Annies and orphans were older than the US girls. The orphans ranged from 6 to 15 and the Annies from 10 to 14- with Cheyenne being the youngest Annie. She was 10 when the tour started.

The Dutch producers were much more lenient regarding the girls ages than the US producers. There were no height or weight checks for the girls during the tour and none of the girls were sacked if they developed too much. You'll see from the audition videos that some of the older girls already had a visible bust and they were still cast.

The girl who played Pepper wasn't really a girl. She was 20 and she performed with all of the groups, doing eight shows a week, like the rest of the adult cast. She was also in the ensemble and understudied Annie, playing the role twice during the tour. Can you imagine a 20-year-old playing Annie in the US, even as an understudy?

When the 2005/6 tour ended, it was extended for 6 months at Efteling Theatre. Then, many girls did leave the show, including the four eldest of the 10 Annies (Stephanie V, Neeltje, Sharon and Jennifer), all of the July's and all but one of the Duffy's. They weren't sacked for being too old, though. It was a joint decision made by them and their parents and the producers. Many of the older girls wanted to and were ready to leave and moved on to other professional work.

The production team were much nicer and fairer to the girls than the US producers. Just look at the videos on YouTube of all the shows in which a girl was performing for the last time. It was announced to the audience and she was given a proper send off.

There was none of the 2am faxes saying 'You're done' and no 'You're too tall/old/fat/developed' like the women on Life After Tomorrow describe, none at all. It was all very amicable.

Alex



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CindyS
CindyS

July 15th, 2008, 12:50 am #4

Thanks for answering. Yes, something can be said for casting older Annies and orphans. I think this production outshines anything I've seen in this country. I understand Martin Charnin using the "cute factor" in casting some of his talented kids, but I don't see anything with the older girls in the Dutch production that takes away from the charm of the orphans and Annies in the shows. All the voices seem well developed and trained.

I guess it's just a matter of opinion, though, so, please everybody, don't blast me for this.

God bless.
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Eliza
Eliza

July 15th, 2008, 1:18 am #5

Cindy, I completely agree with everything you said (and, I suspect, didn't say ).

The one thing that struck me as I watched those videos was how unilaterally talented these girls were, and how amazing it seemed that the Dutch production could maintain such a high level of excellence while casting so many more girls, and from--I assume--a much smaller pool. It makes the quality of the most recent American tour all the more inexcusable to me.

I am also definitely a fan of having a greater diversity of size and maturity among the orphans and using a slightly older-looking Annie. These casts are more reminiscent of the OBC than of the later American productions. I love the images of the original Goodspeed and Broadway casts, where the older orphans actually look like real girls of 12-14. It is odd to me that, as girls are hitting puberty at increasingly younger ages--and thus, generally, looking older--the orphans just keep getting tinier!
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old fan
old fan

July 15th, 2008, 1:48 am #6

Hi Everyone,

I thought it was getting a bit hectic around the Dutch Annie posts and decided to post here instead. Although I'm from the UK, this production is my favourite by far and I've looked into it in some detail.

Read these old forum posts of mine (in order) for an overview of what happened.

http://www.network54.com/Forum/82384/me ... tch+Annies-

http://www.network54.com/Forum/82384/me ... nnie+Forum

The forum I link to and describe is basically the tour website- there isn't a proper website or booking page now the tour is over. It explains really well how the unusual group system worked, 10 groups, later reduced to 6, as the girls' show allowance was so small.

The videos you all linked to feature different groups and some are from the 2005/6 tour and some the 2006/7 run at Efteling Theatre, after the groups had been reduced.

Julie's most recent post 'More Dutch Videos' features two of the original 10 groups doing TV appearances, one group using shortened versions of the songs, one not. Another similar one, from later when there were 6 groups, is here, featuring my favourite Annie, Cheyenne.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VMMawPB3FsI

French Girls' 'My Favourites' are an appearance by one Annie, but when that's from it's impossible to tell and a video of the entire reduced cast 2006/7, appearing on a Dutch music awards show.

The first video Julie posted, to ask about the location, is very interesting as whoever made it, made a mistake with it. The photos are a medley from a performance of one of the original 10 groups (Albert's Angels with Jennifer Welts) but the version of Tomorrow which is playing is from a totally different Dutch cast- the cast of the 1997 production 10 years earlier.

Another medley from the 2005/7 version, this time with the right soundtrack can be found here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KcUSW1SIRPw

It shows footage from the premiere of the show, featuring Robin Virgine, who was lucky enough to play Annie on opening night, with her orphan group, Gesellige Donders.

Robin also played Annie in the very last show, with her Efteling group, De Anniemals, none of whom, ironically, she performed with in the very first show. At the end of the show, all of the other Efteling orphans and the other 5 Annies, who had done their last shows a few days before, came on stage for the curtain.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0CYczN7R ... re=related

Alex
..I finally had a chance to watch. I think I saw a portion of this before...Wow, only 24 performances a YEAR? How much do they rehearse ? I would like to watch this as a full documentary, not in bits and pieces ! I certainly agree the girls are dedicated and excellent performers. And also, that the age range is fine; orphanages just didn't house tiny cute little tykes ! Thanks for posting.
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french_girl
french_girl

July 15th, 2008, 8:54 am #7

about the age range, that was what i was thinking ; there were girls older than 12 in orphanages! so, it's not wierd for me to see older girls like in the Dutch cast, as i guess there were teenagers too in orphanages. though i 've always been wondering at what age they used to leave the orphanage. i don't think it was 18 like today, wasn't it before ? does anyone know ?

thank you alex for all the info, it's very interesting.
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Alex
Alex

July 15th, 2008, 9:02 am #8

Hi Everyone,

I thought it was getting a bit hectic around the Dutch Annie posts and decided to post here instead. Although I'm from the UK, this production is my favourite by far and I've looked into it in some detail.

Read these old forum posts of mine (in order) for an overview of what happened.

http://www.network54.com/Forum/82384/me ... tch+Annies-

http://www.network54.com/Forum/82384/me ... nnie+Forum

The forum I link to and describe is basically the tour website- there isn't a proper website or booking page now the tour is over. It explains really well how the unusual group system worked, 10 groups, later reduced to 6, as the girls' show allowance was so small.

The videos you all linked to feature different groups and some are from the 2005/6 tour and some the 2006/7 run at Efteling Theatre, after the groups had been reduced.

Julie's most recent post 'More Dutch Videos' features two of the original 10 groups doing TV appearances, one group using shortened versions of the songs, one not. Another similar one, from later when there were 6 groups, is here, featuring my favourite Annie, Cheyenne.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VMMawPB3FsI

French Girls' 'My Favourites' are an appearance by one Annie, but when that's from it's impossible to tell and a video of the entire reduced cast 2006/7, appearing on a Dutch music awards show.

The first video Julie posted, to ask about the location, is very interesting as whoever made it, made a mistake with it. The photos are a medley from a performance of one of the original 10 groups (Albert's Angels with Jennifer Welts) but the version of Tomorrow which is playing is from a totally different Dutch cast- the cast of the 1997 production 10 years earlier.

Another medley from the 2005/7 version, this time with the right soundtrack can be found here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KcUSW1SIRPw

It shows footage from the premiere of the show, featuring Robin Virgine, who was lucky enough to play Annie on opening night, with her orphan group, Gesellige Donders.

Robin also played Annie in the very last show, with her Efteling group, De Anniemals, none of whom, ironically, she performed with in the very first show. At the end of the show, all of the other Efteling orphans and the other 5 Annies, who had done their last shows a few days before, came on stage for the curtain.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0CYczN7R ... re=related

Alex
Hi Everyone,

I totally agree with what you've all said. The older girls in the Dutch Annie production were fabulous- very believable and incredibly professional. You're right, that they were all very developed and vocally trained, too.

All of the girls had vocal training of some sort and most had some form of dance training. Some attended performing arts schools and they all had experience of one kind or another. As well as amateur theatre companies, there are children's concerts and music festivals every year in the Netherlands, which many of the girls had taken part in before doing Annie, a national children's choir and performing theatre troupes.

Throughout 2001/2, there was a huge National Tour of The Sound Of Music in the Netherlands (see videos on YouTube)and, as in Annie, several groups of Von Trapp children were cast because of their limited show allowance. Many of the girls who did Annie had also appeared in this tour. Stephanie van Rooijen, the brilliant Annie from many of those videos, was one of the Marta's and another Annie, Kika Wilschut, was a Gretel. One of the orphans, Lizette Hart, played Brigitta and I believe others were involved, too.

The same has happened since Annie ended in March last year, with many girls going on to appear in the same productions. Cherida Krijgsman, the younger sister of the Annie, Cheyenne, who joined the Annie cast to play Molly when it moved to Efteling, joined the cast of Pinokkio, along with other former Annie girls. Her Pinokkio audition video is on YouTube and she sings Hard Knock Life. Other girls have moved on to Ciske The Rat.

Many of the girls have YouTube accounts so search for them. I know that Annie Kika Wilschut has an account (Kikannie), Molly, Eline Breuking (ElineBreuking) and Cheyenne Krijgsman. Eline has posted a video of the full Een Zwaar Bestaan 'Hard Knock Life' sequence, including the dialogue and the reprise. There are also videos of the project she did after she left Annie, just before it moved to Efteling. She had to leave as she became a panellist on the Dutch version of Are You Smarter Than A 10-year-Old? (US: Are You Smarter Than A 5th Grader?)

Alex
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Alex
Alex

July 15th, 2008, 2:14 pm #9

I'm not certain it is 24 shows. When I first saw one of the Dutch videos, I was confused by the number of girls so I asked the person who posted it, why they'd cast so many. They replied, telling me that the show allowance was 24 shows per year. I see no reason why they'd have lied, but it might be wrong.

Either way, it's very small.

Alex
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NYCMom
NYCMom

July 15th, 2008, 5:44 pm #10

Hi Everyone,

I thought it was getting a bit hectic around the Dutch Annie posts and decided to post here instead. Although I'm from the UK, this production is my favourite by far and I've looked into it in some detail.

Read these old forum posts of mine (in order) for an overview of what happened.

http://www.network54.com/Forum/82384/me ... tch+Annies-

http://www.network54.com/Forum/82384/me ... nnie+Forum

The forum I link to and describe is basically the tour website- there isn't a proper website or booking page now the tour is over. It explains really well how the unusual group system worked, 10 groups, later reduced to 6, as the girls' show allowance was so small.

The videos you all linked to feature different groups and some are from the 2005/6 tour and some the 2006/7 run at Efteling Theatre, after the groups had been reduced.

Julie's most recent post 'More Dutch Videos' features two of the original 10 groups doing TV appearances, one group using shortened versions of the songs, one not. Another similar one, from later when there were 6 groups, is here, featuring my favourite Annie, Cheyenne.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VMMawPB3FsI

French Girls' 'My Favourites' are an appearance by one Annie, but when that's from it's impossible to tell and a video of the entire reduced cast 2006/7, appearing on a Dutch music awards show.

The first video Julie posted, to ask about the location, is very interesting as whoever made it, made a mistake with it. The photos are a medley from a performance of one of the original 10 groups (Albert's Angels with Jennifer Welts) but the version of Tomorrow which is playing is from a totally different Dutch cast- the cast of the 1997 production 10 years earlier.

Another medley from the 2005/7 version, this time with the right soundtrack can be found here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KcUSW1SIRPw

It shows footage from the premiere of the show, featuring Robin Virgine, who was lucky enough to play Annie on opening night, with her orphan group, Gesellige Donders.

Robin also played Annie in the very last show, with her Efteling group, De Anniemals, none of whom, ironically, she performed with in the very first show. At the end of the show, all of the other Efteling orphans and the other 5 Annies, who had done their last shows a few days before, came on stage for the curtain.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0CYczN7R ... re=related

Alex
I am probably the only one not loving the Dutch production, but I watched a couple of video links and didn't see anything more impressive than the US productions. Of course there may be other videos that are better that I've not seen. As far as ages, when possible no smart casting director will turn down a combination of cute AND talented in the role's age range when it can be found. I disagree with 14 and 15 year old Annies, and I won't comment on a 20 year old! The US producers may seem strict, but in most cases I think they are trying to be true to the script. The child actors should reasonably represent, in real life, the ages the roles were written for or else come off less than genuine or believable in their performances. I believe adult ages can vary more, though in adult roles that is. Adults playing orphans is crazy, IMHO.
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