Remembering Anne Frank through music

In 1975, Futterman presented the show to Otto Frank himself, who gave it high marks. It debuted in 1979 as "Dear Kitty" at Hotel Concord in the Catskills, with Davis as Peter VanDaan, who hid with the Frank family.

Davis was a singing actor at the time and was thrilled to land the part.

"Since I'm Jewish, I was particularly intrigued," he said. "I loved the piece from the beginning."

Although Davis has since shifted gears so that he's now more of a director, he's remained fond of the piece, believing that its lessons of hope, courage and tolerance are timeless.

"It's not only the Holocaust, it's all holocausts," he said. "Rwanda, Darfur " these things are still going on."

Like Davis, Shannon Rafferty, who plays Frank, thinks it's important to keep Frank's story alive.

"You learn history so you don't repeat it," she said.

Rafferty said she was impressed by Frank's intelligence and courage. "She was brought up well," she said.

Rafferty, meanwhile, was brought up in an artistic family. Her grandfather is local author William Kennedy, who won the Pulitzer Prize for "Ironweed," which was turned into a movie starring Jack Nicholson and Meryl Streep. Rafferty's dad is an actor, and Rafferty got the urge to take the stage herself while helping her dad practice lines.

"It's kind of in my blood," she said.

Rafferty earned a degree from the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City, taking occasional acting jobs while she studied. She recently moved back to the Capital District to work on a master's degree from Russell Sage. Once she graduates, she has a simple aim: to be a working actor.

She's been working a little extra hard on "Yours, Anne." Rafferty wasn't too familiar with Frank's story before she was cast. But she's spent a lot of time researching her role, "trying to understand the angle she's coming from."

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