Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 


Girls named for Annie role - 3 chosen from 630 auditions

Girls named for Annie role - 3 chosen from 630 auditions



Six hundred and thirty girls from throughout New Zealand threw their hats into the ring. They’ve danced, they’ve sung, they’ve laughed and some have even cried.

But for three special Kiwi girls, a look of sheer delight papered their faces yesterday as their names were read out.

All had been vying for roles in the UK production of ANNIE – one of the best loved musicals of all time – and yesterday, 630 became 3 when casting directors from the UK and Australia made their final cut for the lead role.

Zoe Fifield, 13, Auckland and Amelia Walshe, 11, and Ilena Shadbolt, 12, both of Wellington, were chosen to play Annie. The three will alternate the role for seasons in Wellington (from Tuesday 23 May) and Auckland (from Friday 13 June).

A further 48 girls have been chosen to play the roles of orphans. They will be divided into two 24-strong troupes – one for the Wellington season and the other for the Auckland season. These troupes represent Christchurch, New Plymouth, Hamilton, Tauranga, Auckland and Wellington.

Now the hard work begins! Rehearsals will start this week under the direction of UK-based choreographer and associate director Jonny Bowles.

“The girls who auditioned have been absolutely wonderful and so talented,” says Mr Bowles. “But in particular, our three girls chosen to play Annie have absolutely shone with star quality.”

The girls join a stellar international cast that includes Hi De Hi!’s Su Pollard and David McAlister, a veteran of the West End stage and TV dramas.

While the girls get cracking with rehearsals in New Zealand, principal cast – also including MiG Ayesa (Rock Star: INXS, We Will Rock You), Frazer Hines (Emmerdale, Dr Who), Sue Hodge (‘Allo ‘Allo) and John D Collins (‘Allo ‘Allo) – will rehearse their roles simultaneously on the other side of the world until the full cast unites in New Zealand in May.

From its Broadway beginnings to the classic film musical, the heart-warming rags-to-riches story of plucky young Annie’s journey from the hard-knock New York orphanage to the luxurious home of billionaire businessman Oliver Warbucks, is a tale that has been told all over the world for decades.

The toe-tapping score for ANNIE features some of the best-known songs in musical theatre, including “Maybe,” “It’s the Hard Knock Life,” “You’re Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile,” “Easy Street,” “I Don’t Need Anything But You” and the eternal anthem of optimism, “Tomorrow”.

More than 50 million people of all ages have been delighted by three Broadway runs of ANNIE, two Australian tours, two West End stints, five National US companies, two hit movies (1982 and 1999) with a third due for release in December 2014, and dozens of international productions, playing seasons all over the world.

This UK production of ANNIE has been seen by over 3 million people during its tour to every major city in Great Britain, and last year played sell-out seasons in Hong Kong and Singapore.

Inspired by Harold Gray’s famous comic strip Little Orphan Annie which first ran in the New York News in 1924, ANNIE is set in Depression Era New York City at a time when the economy looked bleak, government seemed ineffective and the average citizen was desperate and frustrated. With its hopeful message and unwavering belief in a better tomorrow, ANNIE made its Broadway debut in April 1977 and played 2377 performances before closing in 1983. The show won seven Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Best Book (Thomas Meehan), Best Original Score (music by Charles Strouse and lyrics by Martin Charnin), and Best Choreography.

Now, 37 years after its Broadway debut, the timeless tale of Little Orphan Annie will be coming to New Zealand, giving a whole new generation the chance to experience a classic musical about never giving up hope. ANNIE is a delightful theatrical experience for any age.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
Werewolf: Katniss Joins The News Team

From the outset, the Hunger Games series has dwelt obsessively on the ways that media images infiltrate our public and personal lives... From that grim starting point, Mockingjay Part One takes the process a few stages further. There is very little of the film that does not involve the characters (a) being on screens (b) making propaganda footage to be screened and (c) reacting to what other characters have been doing on screens. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Review Of Books: Ko Witi Te Kaituhituhi

Witi Ihimaera, the distinguished Māori author and the first Māori to publish a book of short stories and a novel, has adopted a new genre with his latest book. But despite its subtitle, this book is a great deal more than a memoir of childhood. More>>

Werewolf: Rescuing Paul Robeson

Would it be any harder these days, for the US government to destroy the career of a famous American entertainer and disappear them from history – purely because of their political beliefs? You would hope so. In 1940, Paul Robeson – a gifted black athlete, singer, film star, Shakespearean actor and orator – was one of the most beloved entertainers on the planet. More>>

ALSO:

"Not A Competition... A Quest": Chapman Tripp Theatre Award Winners

Big winners on the night were Equivocation (Promising Newcomer, Best Costume, Best Director and Production of the Year), Kiss the Fish (Best Music Composition, Outstanding New NZ Play and Best Supporting Actress), and Watch (Best Set, Best Sound Design and Outstanding Performance). More>>

ALSO:

Film Awards: The Dark Horse Scores Big

An inspirational film based on real life Gisborne speed-chess coach An inspirational film based on real life Gisborne speed-chess coach Genesis Potini, made all the right moves to take out top honours along with five other awards at the Rialto Channel New Zealand Film Awards - nicknamed The Moas. More>>

ALSO:

Theatre: Ralph McCubbin Howell Wins 2014 Bruce Mason Award

The Bruce Mason Playwriting Award was presented to Ralph McCubbin Howell at the Playmarket Accolades in Wellington on 23 November 2014. More>>

ALSO:

One Good Tern: Fairy Tern Crowned NZ Seabird Of The Year

The fairy tern and the Fiji petrel traded the lead in the poll several times. But a late surge saw it come out on top with 1882 votes. The Fiji petrel won 1801 votes, and 563 people voted for the little blue penguin. More>>

Music Awards: Lorde Reigns Supreme

Following a hugely successful year locally and internationally, Lorde has done it again taking out no less than six Tuis at the 49th annual Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Culture
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news