In complete tune with an enthusiastic audience I was completely blown away by Cast One’s energetic rendition of “Annie”.
The production/direction team of JEN FRITH and KYLIE GREEN together with choreographer BEC SCHEMBRI have tutored, drilled, moulded and mentored the large cast into a cohesive unit able to deliver an energetic and thoroughly enjoyable piece of musical theatre.
Apart from the iconic signature song “Tomorrow” I loved the treatment given to other show favourites like “It’s a Hard Knock Life” and “Easy Street”. All individual performers sang with clarity and gusto. Bravo!
The Chorus work was exceptional throughout. Coordination of both voice and movement was the essential backbone of the show. Stage entries and exits were smooth and seamless. Dance/movement routines were simple, effective and fun.
The simplicity of set design and great use of the whole stage allowed the combined talents of all performers to shine. And shine they did!
I find it difficult to single out individual performances in such a delightful ensemble but I must make mention of some. EVE GREEN demonstrated powerful voice and actor’s craft in constructing a nicely vindictive Miss Aggie Hannigan.
COOPER JAMES obviously relished the role of Rooster Hannigan. He earned laughs with good timing and delivery direct to the audience.
VICTORIA THORP played secretary Grace Farrell with graceful aplomb. She has a natural stage presence.
HENRY HASLER gave imperious warmth to Oliver Warbucks and his work with Annie produced just the right amount of stage chemistry.
And TAYLOR SCHWARTZ as Annie was simply wonderful. She displayed great timing and voice control with finely balanced confidence, poise and a natural lively stage presence.
Everybody in Cast One contributed to the success of this piece. Great voices, great movement, great energy all adding up to great fun! I must mention that amidst this already incandescent chorus JADE SENECA as Mollie lit up the stage front and centre. And last, though not least, non speaking cast member Teddy the cavoodle was very well behaved and very well received!
To have such a satisfying theatrical outcome with one large cast of children is challenging enough but to rehearse two separate performance groups is quite a triumph. I dips me lid to team JEN FRITH, KYLIE GREEN and BEC SCHEMBRI. This weekend will prove exhausting but the experience and memories afforded to some 104 children and their families will be priceless.