"You're never fully dressed without a smile!" The orphans of Annie Jr. were right, you are never fully dressed without a smile, and last night at their opening at the Cedar Performing Arts Academy everyone was dressed to the nines! It is not hard to smile when you have such a great cast pulling together such an iconic show. There wasn't a dour face in the audience; everyone was charmed by the orphan ensemble, the crazy Ms. Hannigan, and of course the amazing little Annie.
Director Katy Govin pulled together an excellent cast and a wonderful show despite the fact that she has only had control of the cast and show for a few weeks. With the exception of a few first show glitches with music cues the show went off without any problems, a lot to ask of a cast that is mostly made up of small children. Annie and her orphan friends were extremely professional and calm despite the small hiccup with the music change at the opening scene. Audience members feared a tearful scene when the girls realized their cue was off, but ever the professionals they waited with perfect smiles and continued their song without missing a beat.
Annie was played by a precocious little sweetheart Sarah Burke who truly brought the character to life with her strong voice and kind nature, with just a touch of spunk. This little girl has a future ahead of her, with her easy-going nature and amazing stage presence she will make quite the little actress. All the orphan girls made an impact on the audience with their excitement to be on stage. Each little face was alight with the spark of laughter and fun all throughout the show. The kids were not the only talent to grace the stage. The parents and adults helped to make the show a hit. Ms. Hannigan played by Rachel Jennings-Tafarella and Rooster played by Ceron Jones left the audience in stitches with their comedic relief.
The show will run two more times this month of the 20th and 24th. Tickets are $10 for adults and $6 for children 16 years and younger. For more info please contact the Cedar Performing Arts Academy at 661-268-4300, 44851 Cedar Ave. & Lancaster Blvd. it really is a show that everyone will love, so pack up the family and head on over.