St. Patrick students have been given the creative freedom to produce Annie Jr.

The high school drama department will perform at the Northern Arts and Cultural Centre with its first performance tomorrow night.

Director, Emma Smith said she believes students should not feel as if their contributions are controlled.

Annie, played by Grade 9 student Katie Schauerte sits centre stage during a scene at the Northern Arts and Culture Centre.
Michael Hugall/ NNSL photo

“They have ownership,” said Smith. “From set-design to choreography, the students have the drive.”

Auditions for Annie Jr began in September with practices starting in early October. This is the eighth production for Smith and she is excited to see the performers “get paint on their fingers.”

Students are in charge of a lot of what happens back-stage. Smith, an English and Theatre Studies major said she usually sits out in the audience and let’s the students control the production.

It may come as a surprise to some, but the performance of Annie is in fact a Christmas play. The interpretation from the 1980s movie directed by John Huston changed the second act of the movie to take place during Independence Day. However, the second act of the original 1933 screen-play suggests it take place at Christmas.

“A lot of people are under the same misinterpretation,” said Smith “If you thought orphan’s were sad and lonely before, imagine how sad and lonely they will be on Christmas.”

The cast for this year’s production of Annie Jr and the Northern Arts and Cultural Centre includes Grade 9 student Katie Schauerte as Annie. Grade 12 student Alex Trimble at Oliver “daddy” Warbucks and fellow Grade 12 student Amelia Taylor as the rude, drunk, Miss Hannigan.

Tickets are on sale at the NACC box-office or can be purchased online.

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