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A dedicated cast

Middle schoolers to perform ‘Annie Jr.’ four times

Emily Furlong, as Little Orphan Annie, and Lucas Martinez, as Daddy Warbucks, with the orphans. Bethlehem middle schoolers will perform “Annie Jr.” Thursday, Jan. 31, at 7 p.m.; Friday, Feb. 1, at 7 p.m.; and Saturday, Feb. 2, at 2 and 7 p.m.

Emily Furlong, as Little Orphan Annie, and Lucas Martinez, as Daddy Warbucks, with the orphans. Bethlehem middle schoolers will perform “Annie Jr.” Thursday, Jan. 31, at 7 p.m.; Friday, Feb. 1, at 7 p.m.; and Saturday, Feb. 2, at 2 and 7 p.m. Photo by Marcy Velte.

— “It’s a little bit more appropriate for a younger audience,” said Lindsay. “And our Sandy (the dog) sings.”

The musical is set in 1933 and tells the story of Annie, an orphan living in a children’s home in New York City. Annie is picked to live with millionaire Oliver Warbucks for a short time as part of a public relations effort. He soon learns to care for the girl and offers to help her locate her parents.

Furlong, who was also in last year’s production of “Guys and Dolls,” said her favorite scenes are those in which she gets to play along with the orphans.

“The whole cast is very good,” she said. “Everybody puts a lot of work and effort into it, but I like those songs the most.”

Furlong also said she could identify with Annie’s spunk.

“I wouldn’t really call myself shy,” she said.

Martinez said he thinks it’s interesting to see how his character, Daddy Warbuck, develops.

“He’s really fun to play,” he said. “He goes from this cold and heartless rich guy, who doesn’t know what to do with a kid, to a warm, loving father type.”

In total, the production has a cast of more than 60 students, with an additional 50 students on the show’s running crew. The set and costumes were also made with the help of students and parents. Megan Carhart, an eighth-grader, drew the artwork of Annie and Sandy that is being used on all of the promotional material.

“One of the most important things is audiences are going to see really talented kids, a beautiful set, wonderful lighting, and we want people to know this is being done 100 percent by students and volunteers,” said Jason Dashew.

Tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for students and seniors. They can be purchased at the middle school box office starting 90 minutes before the show. The show will be performed Thursday, Jan. 31, at 7 p.m.; Friday, Feb. 1, at 7 p.m.; and Saturday, Feb. 2, at 2 and 7 p.m.

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