Reviewed by Fran Edwards
Annie was presented for 5 performances by AYT with an inexperienced production team, a large cast of young enthusiastic performers and 2 very experienced and talented performers alternating as Daddy Warbucks.
Adam Goldburn and Andrew Crispe willing lent their talents to this very worthwhile enterprise, bringing the focus needed to the pivotal role, which along with the role of Annie gives the story heart.
The production team took on a mammoth task, with 85 people on stage (predominately children) and only ten days of rehearsal. The show was a credit to them. Nadine Wood (director), Deborah Brennan (musical director) and Lauren Dempsey (choreographer) should be applauded, as should the instigators of the phenomenon, Emma Riggs and Kerreane Sarti.
The backstage team worked miracles in the short time available and the props, projected backdrops, the costumes etc were all more than adequate. The playing of the young orchestra and the smooth scene changes all went well. A couple of hiccups with sound on opening night can be forgiven.
There are too many young people involved to mention them all by name (though they all deserve it), but in the two casts Annie was played by Camryn Jordan and Lauren Esposito, both received much acclaim. Other memorable performances came from Laurence Boxhall (President Roosevelt) Tom Goldsmith (Drake the butler), Georgia Broomhall and Madeline Russell (who both played Grace) and, not to be forgotten the very energetic Buddy Dawson who wowed the audience as Rooster Hannigan.
The only thing wrong with this fun show was the short season. We all know this is necessary as most of the cast needed to return to school, however, it is a great shame that more people were not able to take a look at what our youth is capable of. Well done all!