With Charlie and the von Trapps in the rearview mirror, the Mill Valley Middle School Cabaret has set its sights of a plucky, unflappable little redheaded orphan with a production of Annie, the musical, based on the popular Harold Gray comic strip Little Orphan Annie.

The all-ages production, set for March 3-5, features a cast and crew of approximately 100 students who auditioned to be singers, dancers, and actors or who applied to be stage managers, set designers, costume designers, makeup artists, lighting assistants, and sound assistants.​ The musical is directed, produced, and choreographed by a team of creative professionals with the help of student input. There are three school performances for the entire student body, followed by two evening performances and one matinee for the public. 

The Middle School Cabaret was started by the school’s music/choral director Jessica Nicholson in the wake of the 2011 retirement of longtime middle school musical director Joan Deamer. In 2015, the Cabaret took on Charlie & the Chocolate Factory, moving on the the classic Sound of Music a year later.

Now the cast and crew is turning its attention to the famous Broadway musical based on Gray’s comic strip, in which Annie longs for a life beyond her dreary orphanage. Those dreams become reality when she’s chosen to stay for a week at the mansion of the famous billionaire Oliver “Daddy” Warbucks. Annie wins over her benefactor, and one week turns into many more, despite the best efforts of Miss Hannifin, the boozy orphanage matron. The musical’s songs “Tomorrow” and “It’s the Hard Knock Life” have long been regarded as classics.

With music by Charles Strouse, lyrics by Martin Charnin, and the book by Thomas Meehan, funding for this production of Annie is partially provided by Kiddo!, ticket sales, bake sales, and private donations. This production is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI)All tickets proceeds go towards the Mill Valley Middle School Drama Department.

The 411: The Mill Valley Middle School Cabaret’s production of Annie features three school performances for the entire student body, followed by one evening performance (Friday, March 3, 7:30pm) and two matinees (March 4 and 5, both 1pm) – all three are open to the public. Middle School Gym, 425 Sycamore Ave. Tix $10-$35. Tickets available online or at the door (cash or check only). MORE INFO & TIX.

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