Annieorphans.com

I saw their opening night (December 29th), but I haven't gotten around to writing a review. I was actually able to see it a second time tonight, so while it's fresh in my mind...

Heidi Gray is fantastic as Annie. She looks natural in the role and her voice is very clear. I have to say that Issie had more of a belt, but I think Heidi's voice will get stronger as the show goes on. There was a noticeable improvement after only a few days. On her first night, the dog decided to walk off stage during Tomorrow. She called him back and went about the scene, but the 'ad libs' cut some of the dialogue, leaving a lull as she waited for the music to catch up. She handled this unfazed and just smiled and looked around the stage as if she we admiring the city. All in all, she a delight to watch on stage.

Along with Heidi, the new orphans Bridget Carly Marsh, Casey Watkins, Sage Bentley, and Annabelle Wachtel are wonderful additions. I don't know if Molly Rose Meredith and Emily Moreland still count as new as they have been around for a few months, but they are great as well. 

The new kids definitely look older (with the exception of Annabelle and Emily) than the original cast for this tour. I don't know what the reasoning is, but as far as Annies go, I personally prefer seeing an older actress (11-13) playing her so I have no complaints. I can't help but wonder when the next recast will be. Hopefully not too soon though, because these kids are working wonderfully together already. 

In addition to the orphans, I noticed some new faces in the ensemble (We'd Like To Thank You Herbert Hoover was particularly good on the 29th), and there is a new actress playing Grace (Chloe Tiso). Her singing is beautiful, and I think it's neat that she was originally a Swing. I think she's still trying to find the ways she wants to deliver her lines. She said some differently each time. Like I said about Heidi, there was a noticeable (good) change after a few short days.

Hope this covers everything about the newcomers!

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