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Hereford Musical Theatre Company presents Annie at The Courtyard
3:00pm Thursday 25th October 2012 in Leisure
IT’S a well-known fact that actors are advised never to work with children or animals. But this autumn’s production from Hereford Musical Theatre, the classic musical Annie, has a cast featuring a cute collection of both, and reports of rehearsals suggest that it’s all going well.
Following the success of April’s production of The Sound of Music, the thriving HMTC Youth Group will return to The Courtyard stage again this autumn along with the adult company to show us that it’s not all 'a hard knock life!' and they’re sure that ‘the sun’ll come out’ as they bring the much-loved Annie to the stage.
With memorable songs like Hard Knock Life and Tomorrow, Annie tells the story of the 11-year-old orphan who, having lost her parents is brought up in an orphanage until she is invited to spend Christmas with billionaire Oliver Warbucks at his mansion. Annie is determined to find her parents, but life has a few surprises in store...
For this production, HMTC have secured the services of a professional actor - of the canine variety. Danny the dog, a soft-coated wheaten terrier, has played the part of faithful pet Sandy, in more than 1400 performances of Annie all over Britain and Ireland, an achievement that has put him in the Guinness Book of World Records as the holder of the world record for ‘the most performances by a dog in a theatrical production’, and he’s appeared with Lesley Joseph of Birds of a Feather fame and Hi De Hi's Sue Pollard. And now Danny, who’s a real ‘champion of the world’, is working alongside the two budding young stars who are sharing the leading role of Annie: Hattie Pandeli and Anja Scot. Hattie will have just turned 13 as the show opens, and is in year eight at the Bishop of Hereford’s Bluecoat School. She’s been performing in the children’s shows at HMTC for about four years and most recently played Brigitta in the The Sound of Music. Unsurprisingly, she loves acting and singing, but when she’s not hard at work rehearsing for HMTC she sings in a local choir and is a patrol leader at Guides.
Sharing the role with Hattie is 11-year-old Anja, who’s in year seven at the Bishop of Hereford’s Bluecoat School. She has performed in many dance shows with the Hereford Ballet School and was thrilled to make the semi-finals of Hereford’s Got Talent with her dance friends. A keen gymnast, Anja’s favourite subjects at school are art and drama. Both Hattie and Anja are looking forward to playing this demanding role, alongside a HMTC cast that features a mix of company stalwarts and new members. Ian Burrell will be repeating the role of Oliver Warbucks, a part he played with the company ten years ago and his secretary Grace Farrell will be played by Sarah Phillips who directed The Sound of Music earlier this year. Adele Alexander, who played the role of Miss Hannigan for HMTC ten years ago reprises the role in 2012, the latest in a number of leading roles she’s played since joining the company in 1983, while Mark Price, whose daughters Beth and Amelia also appear in the production, plays his first major role as Rooster Hannigan. Mark joined HMTC in 2011, making his first appearance in Me and My Girl.
Hereford Musical Theatre Company present Annie at The Courtyard Hereford, from October 30 to Saturday, November 3 at 7.30pm with a matinee performance on Saturday at 2.30pm. To book, call the box office on 01432 340555