The Annie Tour Now!!!!

Susan Rush
Susan Rush

December 1st, 2008, 5:26 pm #1

I had to write and tell you about our terrific experience in New Brunswick, New Jersey last night. I went to see Annie with my two daughters who are 18 and 22. I have worked as a talent manager and have always gone to see my clients in Annie and my younger daughter played the title role twice so needless to say, I have seen the show quite a few times. To say that I was pleasantly surprised watching last night's performance is a vast understatement. The show was absolutely terrific and there were several new additions that made the show refreshing to watch. Mackenzie Aladmem played Molly and I have never before seen anyone play that role as adorable and polished. In my opinion, the entire cast was terrific but that little "Peanut," Mackenzie "Stole the Show!" In conclusion, if you haven't ever seen Annie or if you have, as I have, Run to see it! If I were holding a glass, I would Raise It!!
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Joined: March 6th, 2006, 9:12 pm

December 1st, 2008, 7:35 pm #2

And yes, the Molly was tiny and absolutely adorable. There were some changes from recent tours -- for example, Duffy (the second-smallest) did the little Molly dance solo in "Never Fully Dressed." Kate/Annie understudy, who I'm told is fantastic, did the opening solo. July did the "Who cares what you're wearing" solo, and used the same funny voice as Wacky's in the radio scene.

Grace was fantastic, and she's a friend of mine, so I was so proud of her! It's an ideal role for her. Miss Hannigan was also incredible; both were so polished and had such even performances. I can't believe how young Hannigan really is. Warbucks was great, as were Rooster and Lily, although I felt that "Easy Street" was significantly faster than I usually hear it, and a lot of Rooster/Lily lines were very fast. Actually, a lot of the lines in the show were fast in general, as if someone had told the cast to pick up the pace, and I lost some of the meaning in the speed of it all.

Annie was great, although I could sense that her voice was getting tired, and I don't blame her! She certainly pulled through, and it's a really pretty voice, with a nice clear tone. They have a rough schedule, especially with additional matinees for the long Thanksgiving weekend, and they have been traveling a LOT this week. I heard rumors that they might eventually put the understudy in for matinees, as they did for Amanda last year to give her a break, and I think that might be a good idea. No child should be expected to sing full-out for that many shows a week, for any extended period of time!

The orphans were all good, but they all seemed quite old! Not too old for the parts, certainly, it was just that except for Molly and Duffy (her understudy), every orphan was on the tall end, and they were all about the same height.

I did this show when I was ten, and I remember it word-for-word, so I really noticed all the changes that have happened since then. Yes, Hooverville is in, the Cabinet scene is in, and I think all of those minutes that had been cut were restored. But there were many line changes that I didn't appreciate at all. It sort of seemed as if Martin Charnin is turning Annie into a Disney production -- really pandering to the kids, camping it up, instead of keeping the serious quality of the true Broadway hit that it was when it first opened. Annie (the show, not the character) doesn't need every other line hammed up for a laugh -- let the laughs come naturally! Not having seen the show since I was about 12, I was really bothered by these silly changes, and I felt sorry for the cast members who had to say the silly lines or do the silly bits.

Last thing: in the original script, after the Mudges come meet Annie and leave again, Annie's line is (dejectedly): "Just think: New Jersey." I was waiting for that moment, since we were seeing the show in NJ, but the line was changed to: "Just think: a pig farm." I asked my friend if the change was made just for the NJ performances, or for the entire show, and she said it was the latter. Too bad -- I think that would have gotten a great laugh with the NJ audience!
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old fan
old fan

December 1st, 2008, 8:54 pm #3

Thanks for your comments. I agree it is sad and unecessary to "ham it up." I for one enjoyed the original dialogue etc. I also noticed in photos that some of the orphans look "old." I wouldn't be surprised if they are replaced at some point. Neat that your friend in in the show.
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Joined: June 3rd, 2003, 6:48 pm

December 1st, 2008, 9:12 pm #4

And yes, the Molly was tiny and absolutely adorable. There were some changes from recent tours -- for example, Duffy (the second-smallest) did the little Molly dance solo in "Never Fully Dressed." Kate/Annie understudy, who I'm told is fantastic, did the opening solo. July did the "Who cares what you're wearing" solo, and used the same funny voice as Wacky's in the radio scene.

Grace was fantastic, and she's a friend of mine, so I was so proud of her! It's an ideal role for her. Miss Hannigan was also incredible; both were so polished and had such even performances. I can't believe how young Hannigan really is. Warbucks was great, as were Rooster and Lily, although I felt that "Easy Street" was significantly faster than I usually hear it, and a lot of Rooster/Lily lines were very fast. Actually, a lot of the lines in the show were fast in general, as if someone had told the cast to pick up the pace, and I lost some of the meaning in the speed of it all.

Annie was great, although I could sense that her voice was getting tired, and I don't blame her! She certainly pulled through, and it's a really pretty voice, with a nice clear tone. They have a rough schedule, especially with additional matinees for the long Thanksgiving weekend, and they have been traveling a LOT this week. I heard rumors that they might eventually put the understudy in for matinees, as they did for Amanda last year to give her a break, and I think that might be a good idea. No child should be expected to sing full-out for that many shows a week, for any extended period of time!

The orphans were all good, but they all seemed quite old! Not too old for the parts, certainly, it was just that except for Molly and Duffy (her understudy), every orphan was on the tall end, and they were all about the same height.

I did this show when I was ten, and I remember it word-for-word, so I really noticed all the changes that have happened since then. Yes, Hooverville is in, the Cabinet scene is in, and I think all of those minutes that had been cut were restored. But there were many line changes that I didn't appreciate at all. It sort of seemed as if Martin Charnin is turning Annie into a Disney production -- really pandering to the kids, camping it up, instead of keeping the serious quality of the true Broadway hit that it was when it first opened. Annie (the show, not the character) doesn't need every other line hammed up for a laugh -- let the laughs come naturally! Not having seen the show since I was about 12, I was really bothered by these silly changes, and I felt sorry for the cast members who had to say the silly lines or do the silly bits.

Last thing: in the original script, after the Mudges come meet Annie and leave again, Annie's line is (dejectedly): "Just think: New Jersey." I was waiting for that moment, since we were seeing the show in NJ, but the line was changed to: "Just think: a pig farm." I asked my friend if the change was made just for the NJ performances, or for the entire show, and she said it was the latter. Too bad -- I think that would have gotten a great laugh with the NJ audience!
Keep them coming!
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Noel
Noel

December 2nd, 2008, 2:39 am #5

I had to write and tell you about our terrific experience in New Brunswick, New Jersey last night. I went to see Annie with my two daughters who are 18 and 22. I have worked as a talent manager and have always gone to see my clients in Annie and my younger daughter played the title role twice so needless to say, I have seen the show quite a few times. To say that I was pleasantly surprised watching last night's performance is a vast understatement. The show was absolutely terrific and there were several new additions that made the show refreshing to watch. Mackenzie Aladmem played Molly and I have never before seen anyone play that role as adorable and polished. In my opinion, the entire cast was terrific but that little "Peanut," Mackenzie "Stole the Show!" In conclusion, if you haven't ever seen Annie or if you have, as I have, Run to see it! If I were holding a glass, I would Raise It!!
In a couple of the Blogs they refer to the tour as the next 14 months. I only see listings through June on the website. Does any one know what they are referring to?
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fan
fan

December 2nd, 2008, 2:01 pm #6

they might be extending this tour to go onto China
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Hi
Hi

December 2nd, 2008, 7:19 pm #7

And yes, the Molly was tiny and absolutely adorable. There were some changes from recent tours -- for example, Duffy (the second-smallest) did the little Molly dance solo in "Never Fully Dressed." Kate/Annie understudy, who I'm told is fantastic, did the opening solo. July did the "Who cares what you're wearing" solo, and used the same funny voice as Wacky's in the radio scene.

Grace was fantastic, and she's a friend of mine, so I was so proud of her! It's an ideal role for her. Miss Hannigan was also incredible; both were so polished and had such even performances. I can't believe how young Hannigan really is. Warbucks was great, as were Rooster and Lily, although I felt that "Easy Street" was significantly faster than I usually hear it, and a lot of Rooster/Lily lines were very fast. Actually, a lot of the lines in the show were fast in general, as if someone had told the cast to pick up the pace, and I lost some of the meaning in the speed of it all.

Annie was great, although I could sense that her voice was getting tired, and I don't blame her! She certainly pulled through, and it's a really pretty voice, with a nice clear tone. They have a rough schedule, especially with additional matinees for the long Thanksgiving weekend, and they have been traveling a LOT this week. I heard rumors that they might eventually put the understudy in for matinees, as they did for Amanda last year to give her a break, and I think that might be a good idea. No child should be expected to sing full-out for that many shows a week, for any extended period of time!

The orphans were all good, but they all seemed quite old! Not too old for the parts, certainly, it was just that except for Molly and Duffy (her understudy), every orphan was on the tall end, and they were all about the same height.

I did this show when I was ten, and I remember it word-for-word, so I really noticed all the changes that have happened since then. Yes, Hooverville is in, the Cabinet scene is in, and I think all of those minutes that had been cut were restored. But there were many line changes that I didn't appreciate at all. It sort of seemed as if Martin Charnin is turning Annie into a Disney production -- really pandering to the kids, camping it up, instead of keeping the serious quality of the true Broadway hit that it was when it first opened. Annie (the show, not the character) doesn't need every other line hammed up for a laugh -- let the laughs come naturally! Not having seen the show since I was about 12, I was really bothered by these silly changes, and I felt sorry for the cast members who had to say the silly lines or do the silly bits.

Last thing: in the original script, after the Mudges come meet Annie and leave again, Annie's line is (dejectedly): "Just think: New Jersey." I was waiting for that moment, since we were seeing the show in NJ, but the line was changed to: "Just think: a pig farm." I asked my friend if the change was made just for the NJ performances, or for the entire show, and she said it was the latter. Too bad -- I think that would have gotten a great laugh with the NJ audience!
Hi-- I did see the show also recently. But I think the older orphans seem the right size. After all July is supposed to be 13 and Pepper is 12 in the story. My 13 year old is HUGE compared to those kids on stage in Annie and I do think preteens are bigger than you think. Perhaps you think they are to tall on stage because you are comparing them next to such a small Molly this time. Maybe???
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Joined: March 6th, 2006, 9:12 pm

December 2nd, 2008, 9:40 pm #8

To clarify -- I definitely didn't think they were TOO tall. I thought I was clear about that, that I didn't think they were too tall for their roles, I just thought it was funny that all of the taller ones were about the same size, on the tall end (of the size specified at auditions, I assume), and then there were the two tiny ones. You are absolutely right that they weren't too tall to play orphans at all!

Edited to add:

Here's what I originally wrote:


The orphans were all good, but they all seemed quite old! Not too old for the parts, certainly, it was just that except for Molly and Duffy (her understudy), every orphan was on the tall end, and they were all about the same height.
Last edited by -Grief- on December 2nd, 2008, 9:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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old fan
old fan

December 2nd, 2008, 9:57 pm #9

I have not even seen the new show ! I just meant from photos, the older girls are fine for the parts NOW, but MAY grow too tall after a few months of the 14-month tour. That's all.
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opinions
opinions

December 3rd, 2008, 4:11 am #10

The Mollys and Duffys in recent past have tended to be on the small side, so I don't think anybody was comparing the others to those roles, but the other orphans do have a sort of older look. Face it, age 13 today is alot different than 13 in the 1930s. We all have our opinions, mine is the orphans should look like the little girls theywere written to be. Anyway, I guess it will always be a magical show for some little girl somewhere, but Annie isn't doing it for me personally anymore. Seems like the show is just thrown together or something. No offense.
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