Four stars out of four
BY GEORGE J. DACRE
This show has everything…the rags to riches story of Orphan Annie, the rescue of her dog Sandy, charming and wealthy Daddy Warbucks…a great cast of wonderful orchestration and choreography. The audience at Thursday night’s press night reacted to this show warmly and strongly from beginning to end.
“Anne” is well directed and choreographed by Mary Jane Houdina. Eleven-year-old Peyton Ella as Annie has a very strong voice and her rendition of “Tomorrow” is a showstopper. This lovely young lady has a strong future in show business and is on the top of her act as she worked with some very well-seasoned pros. Susan Fletcher plays the mean boss, Miss Hannigan, at the New York Municipal Orphanage Girls Annex. Fletcher is just superb and sometimes very funny in her role. Additionally, the children who play fellow orphans to Annie are winsome and very talented. Michael DeVries is outstanding and regal as Daddy Warbucks. Adam Roberts and Aubrey Sinn are Rooster and Lily respectfully, pretend parents of Annie, and they are great.
Set in New York City in 1933, “Annie” is set in New York, but extends to the White House with a charming FDR, played by John Charles Kelly. There are scenes at Hooverville under the 59th Street Bridge, the Warbucks mansion on Fifth Avenue and NBC Radio studios at Rockefeller Center.
The costuming, the stage direction and the musical presentation by the WBT orchestra, headed by William Stanley, all make for a first-rate production well worthy of our rating “four stars out of four.” Catch “Annie” at Westchester Broadway Theatre in Elmsford.
As Pias Haas writes in the Playbill, “’Annie’ is a story of hope, promise, perseverance, and above all, a love story. It will make you laugh and cry and feel the promise of tomorrow.” And don’t we all need that.
Visit www.broadwaytheatre,com or call 914-592-2222 for more information.