Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Orphan Annie comes to Largo High

Go inside the Largo High School Auditorium in the afternoon this week, and you'll see them everywhere. Teenagers are onstage, backstage and in the orchestra. Some are gingerly dancing to and fro. Others are belting out the likes of Tomorrow and Easy Street. One hundred teenage students, plus a yellow Lab in the role of Sandy, are involved in Largo High School's spring musical, Annie, based upon the Harold Gray comic strip. It is a joint effort that includes the school's drama, choral and band programs.

Two students are performing as the plucky redheaded orphan. On Friday, Mary Renfroe will take the stage as Annie, along with Blake Doner as Oliver "Daddy" Warbucks and Ashley Kemker as Miss Hannigan. On Saturday, Laura Morris will perform as Annie, with Michael Shurtz as Daddy Warbucks and Adrianna Clark as Miss Hannigan.

Deborah Wortock, director of Largo High School's drama program and the show producer, said the two Annies were selected for their "perfect Annie voices.''

"We just knew that they were the ones,'' she said. "They are an absolute joy to work with.''

The rest of the cast is also solid, Wortock said. "They rehearse diligently with each other, even when I am not working with them. I love their energy.''

This year's show is different from last year's spring production, according to Nathaniel Lanz. Lanz, who will portray Rooster, Annie's friend who dons a disguise to rescue her from the orphanage, performed in The Odd Couple last spring. He played Roy, Oscar Madison's accountant-and poker-buddy.

"I love theater, and I liked doing The Odd Couple, but I'm much more comfortable doing this,'' Lanz said. "I think it's because it's a musical, and I really like to sing and move around up there.''

The show brings together the 20-plus years' working relationship of Wortock, Bill Renfroe, the choral director, and Chris Benoit, the band director. Past shows they've done together include Anything Goes, Kiss Me Kate, Guys and Dolls and The Sound of Music.

"By now, it is a seamless partnership,'' Wortock said.

Last Wednesday, as Wortock moved the actors and dancers to and from the stage, Benoit conducted the orchestra, made up of 26 musicians playing French horns, trombones, flutes, violins and cellos.

Every few minutes, he'd stop the music, and review the story line as well as analyze the lyrics. "Okay, listen, I really want you to understand what this song NYC is about,'' Benoit told the students. "This is a love song, of sorts, for New York City.''

Wortock clapped in agreement.

"That's right, and you know what? Nobody loves New York more than me,'' she said, moving through the line of students. "Nobody loves it more than me.''


On stage

What: Largo High School Fine Arts Department presents its spring musical, Annie.

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday

Where: Largo High School, 410 Missouri Ave.

Cost: Tickets are $10.

More information: Call Debbie Wortock at (727) 588-3758.

Orphan Annie comes to Largo High 05/04/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, May 4, 2010 8:26pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Florida education news: Accountability plan, post-Irma, turnarounds and more


    ACCOUNTABILITY: The Florida Department of Education submits a revised Every Student Succeeds Act plan without the waiver requests it had originally proposed. Experts and advocates …

    High Point Elementary teacher Kristen Bierman works with English language learners on their reading skills. The state wants to test all students in English, saying it's Florida law.
  2. Rays morning after: Zim's legacy felt on bunt play



  3. Work, threats continue as Hernando recovers from Irma

    Local Government


    Hurricane Irma's fierce winds are becoming a memory, but the water the storm left behind has become a real threat on Hernando's east side.

    This aerial drone view shows flooding on the Withlacoochee River in the Talisman Estates area of east Hernando, south of Ridge Manor. The river is about 6 feet above flood stage, and its floodwaters are not expected to recede for days.
  4. A boy and a girl stare at the camera from their house after Hurrciane Maria hit the eastern region of the island, in Humacao, Puerto Rico, Tuesday, September 20, 2017. The strongest hurricane to hit Puerto Rico in more than 80 years destroyed hundreds of homes, knocked out power across the entire island and turned some streets into raging rivers in an onslaught that could plunge the U.S. territory deeper into financial crisis. [Associated Prss]
  5. Forecast: Dry air, hot temperatures remain in control across Tampa Bay


    Dry but hot weather will continue Thursday across Tampa Bay with only a 20 percent chance of showers forecast for the afternoon.

    7 day forecast. [WTSP]