6th Street Playhouse
Runs in Santa Rosa through December 21

Larry Williams, Alina Kingwill Peterson, 
Morgan Harrington, and Cast

Photo by Eric Chazankin

Set in the height of the Great Depression of the 1930s, the ever-popular musical Annie, with book by Thomas Meehan, music by Charles Strouse, lyrics by Martin Charnin, supplies a rags-to-riches story for one little girl, offering a vision of hope and optimism for all ages and eras. 6th Street Playhouse is currently running an attractive production of this family-oriented show, featuring multiple castings of the title role and many of the orphan girls with talented youth and solid performances from the adult leads. With its relentlessly positive attitude and Christmas themes, it’s a fun holiday piece for young ones who can sit still for two and a half hours, especially for those unfamiliar with the story.

If you bring youthful patrons, be prepared to explain many of the historical references and quips, some of which even younger adults may not know. Eleven-year-old Annie (Alina Kingwill Peterson or Evelyn Goodwin) is determined to find the parents who left her on the New York city orphanage steps years before. After one failed runaway, Annie escapes the tyrannical orphanage director Miss Hannigan (Daniela Innocenti-Beem) by becoming a temporary adoptee at the home of famous billionaire Oliver Warbucks (Larry Williams).

Meant to stay for only two weeks, Annie’s charms and native intelligence win the hearts of Warbucks, his secretary Grace (Morgan Harrington), and all his staff. But when he proposes to adopt her, she can’t see beyond her desire for her own real parents, and Warbucks launches a full-scale FBI search, offering a hefty reward and reaching all the way to the Presidency (Steve Thorpe as Franklin D. Roosevelt). Miss Hannigan, her brother Rooster (Jeff Coté), and his girlfriend Lily (Lydia Revelos) concoct a scheme to cash in, and thereby hangs the rest of the tale. …

To continue reading about this production, see the full review at Talkin’