News

NAPLES, Fla. (Oct. 18, 2021) – Audiences will be grinning from ear to ear when “Annie” plays at Gulfshore Playhouse from December 16 through 19, 2021. “Annie” will be performed by Gulfshore Playhouse Education students aged 8 to 18.

Plucky orphan Annie charms everyone’s hearts on her inspiring journey to find her family. Set against the backdrop of 1930s New York City, Annie dreams of escaping from the orphanage run by the cruel Miss Hannigan and finding the parents who left her there years ago. Annie encounters billionaire Oliver Warbucks, his secretary Grace, adorable canine companion Sandy, and even President Franklin D. Roosevelt as she goes on adventure after adventure all while foiling the plans of the dastardly Miss Hannigan. “Annie” is hopeful, joyful, and will arrive just in time for the holiday season.

“Annie” features a book by Thomas Meehan, music by Charles Strouse, and lyrics by Martin Charnin. The production is directed by Gulfshore Playhouse director of education Steven Calakos who most recently directed “Grease” and “Little Shop of Horrors” at Gulfshore Playhouse. Additionally, the creative team includes choreographer Allison Scott, music director Carolann Sanitas, scenic designer Alex K, lighting designer Elizabeth Kennell, sound designer Sean McGinley, and costume designer Jennifer Bronsted.

“This is the second season where we’ve included a Gulfshore Playhouse Education show as part of the offerings during our regular season. I felt ‘Annie’ was the right show at the right time because it’s a heartwarming classic that inspires us to always have hope. It’s an honor to watch our students grow over the course of rehearsals, as both performers and as people, and I know ‘Annie’ is going to be a wonderful way to celebrate the holiday season,” said director of education and “Annie” director Steven Calakos.

“Annie” features a cast of 29 local southwest Florida student actors. The ensemble receives pre-professional training in musical theatre performance from Gulfshore Playhouse teaching artists with a focus on building confidence, prioritizing teamwork, and encouraging self-expression. The role of Annie will be played by Solei Bourgeois who has starred in numerous productions in Naples and played Lulu in the “Waitress” Broadway tour at Artis—Naples. She is joined by student actors Lyndi Floyd-Sweet as Miss Hannigan, Gavin Ott as Oliver Warbucks, and Avery Roscheck as Grace Farrell.

Annie tickets are on sale now and available for just $20 per person. To purchase tickets, visit gulfshoreplayhouse.org or call the box office at 239-261-7529.

Thanks to a generous donation from Arthrex, SynexisTM technology will be located throughout the audience chamber as an additional safety measure. SynexisTM mobile units emit a low level of dry hydrogen peroxide, proven to kill airborne and surface bacterias and viruses. For more information, visit https://synexis.com/science/reports-data/. Gulfshore Playhouse is currently requiring masks to be worn by all audience members. These measures are part of a continuing effort by Gulfshore Playhouse to produce live theatrical experiences as safely as possible.

Gulfshore Playhouse is passionately committed to enriching the cultural landscape of our region by producing professional theatre to the highest artistic standards and providing unique educational opportunities to diverse groups of people in a spirit of service, adventure, and excitement. The work of Gulfshore Playhouse is inspired by a belief in the magic of theatre to expand the imagination, challenge the senses, provoke discussion, and revitalize in its audiences an understanding of our common humanity. This belief drives the care with which Gulfshore Playhouse treats its artists, audiences, students, staff, and members of the greater community.

The professional theatre is also leading the nation’s growth for arts and entertainment with progress for the new Gulfshore Playhouse at the Baker Theatre and Education Center. Recently announcing the public phase for the fundraising campaign for the new building, welcoming gifts of all sizes, the new Cultural Campus is slated to break ground this fall. The Cultural Campus has been created as a cornerstone for culture, education, and community engagement that epitomizes the region’s growing reputation as a destination for the arts. The Baker Theatre and Education Center will be home to world-class professional productions that have the power to foster connections, catalyze conversations, and bridge cultural differences. The new theatre and education center will also serve the entire region with accessible education programming and elegant cultural engagement spaces open to the public.

For more information about Gulfshore Playhouse or its new facility, visit www.gulfshoreplayhouse.org or call 239-261-PLAY (7529).