With PE’s Gilbert & Sullivan Society not having mounted a full-scale musical in 2016, they will be reviving the timeless Irving Berlin classic, Annie Get Your Gun, last staged by the society in 1995, directed by Robin Williams with her sister from Cape Town, Julie Dickson, guesting to excellent, Showtime award-winning effect in the leading role of Annie Oakley.
Rose Cowpar will direct this time, again with Richard Campbell handling the musical and vocal direction.
The ultimate family show – unexpectedly “trailered” by the major hit from the score, There’s No Business Like Show Business, brilliantly staged to close the first half of the 2017 Clover Showtime Revue, A Grand Night for Singing, in PE ten days ago – requires an all-ages cast.
No choreographer has been named by G&S in its media release and the show is set to run in May/June in the Savoy Theatre.
The audition process began with an orientation session on February 1, but the auditions will only be held on February 18 and 19.
Annie Get your Gun features several major roles aside from the titular Annie such as Frank Butler, Dolly Tate, Buffalo Bill, Winnie Tate, and four parts for under 16-year-olds as well as many other speaking, dancing and singing roles.
Vocal and movement auditions will take place on February 18 from 10am. Auditionees for the ensemble are required to prepare one song which shows off their vocal ability. Anyone auditioning for the principal roles will be required to sing specific songs as outlined in the audition package which was made available at the orientation.
An audition pianist will be on hand as well as a CD player for backing tracks. The following day will be devoted to callbacks to read for all lead roles. Everyone is required to attend both the singing and dance/movement auditions on February 18.
Annie Get your Gun tells the story of Annie Oakley, the greatest female sharpshooter, who went from backwoods hunter supporting her quartet of younger brothers and sisters to become the star of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show.
The musical, which opened on Broadway with Ethel Merman as Annie, in 1946, ran for 1147 performances in its premiere Great White Way run and has been revived innumerable times in New York and London, with such headliners as Debbie Reynolds, TV stars Barbara Eden and Susan Lucci, singers such as Reba McEntire and Suzi Quatro, and Bernadette Peters as Annie Oakley.
Aside from Show Business, the score includes musical theatre standards such as Doin’ What Comes Natur’lly, You Can’t Get a Man with a Gun, They Say It’s Wonderful, and Anything You Can Do.