By Gillian Eames, Production Director
The TASIS community took a step back in time to New York City in December of 1933 druing Arts Festival. Annie Jr. the musical, was performed by TASIS Middle School students May 12 - May 15 in the Palmer Cultural Center. This production was mounted by Gillian Eames - Production Director, and Music Teachers Celeste Colmenero - Piano and Oboe Accompanist and Sarah Grove - Production Assistant and Heather Lazar - Costume Design and Scenic Artist.
The show’s story is as incorrigibly optimistic as its heroine, the little orphan Annie, who escapes a “hard-knock” life of misery and labor, determined to find her parents, and ends up unexpectedly finding joy and acceptance from a loving new father. Prevailing through adversity while sticking by one’s dreams of a better “tomorrow” is what Annie Jr. is all about, an idea arguably as relevant today as it may have been in New York City in 1933. It is a universal idea that even the staunchest cynic among us can find significant.
This production’s international cast and crew was one to celebrate. And each stuck by his or her dream to help make it a memorable experience for everyone. Speaking in their own diverse accents, hailing from Brasil, USA, South Korea, China, Germany, Holland, Italy, France and Russia, this international cast of twenty-four 7th and 8th Graders fearlessly tackled the New York City slang and intonations of the Depression Era establishing a unique, new "melting pot" of their own. The backstage, front-of-house and lighting crew all learned the importance of collaboration and helped to make this production of Annie Jr. a true success.