Australia's preeminent musical theatre and opera star Anthony Warlow will make his Broadway debut as billionaire Daddy Warbucks in the new production of ANNIE, the Tony Award-winning classic musical. ANNIE opens November 8 at the Palace Theatre (1567 Broadway at 47th Street). Previews begin October 3. Warlow stars opposite two-time Tony Award-winner Katie Finneran as Miss Hannigan and 11-year-old Lilla Crawford (Billy Elliot) as Annie.
Warlow is currently playing Daddy Warbucks in the critically acclaimed Australian production of ANNIE now playing at Melbourne's Regent Theatre. That production, produced by John Frost, premiered in December, 2011 at Sydney's Lyric Theatre. Warlow also played Warbucks in a previous revival of ANNIE in 2000.
"I'm having a great time playing Oliver Warbucks here in the Australian production and have always loved Broadway and New York City," Warlow said, "so I am delighted to finally make my Broadway debut at the great Palace Theatre and in the exciting new production of this wonderful musical. I look forward to working with the talented James Lapine and his fantastic cast and creative team."
"Anthony Warlow is a true international superstar," commented producer Arielle Tepper Madover. "We are so excited to welcome him to Broadway in our new production of ANNIE. I know he will be the Daddy Warbucks of our dreams."
ANNIE features music by Charles Strouse, lyrics by Martin Charnin and book by Thomas Meehan, based on the newspaper character "Little Orphan Annie" by Harold Gray. The new production of ANNIE is directed by three-time Tony Award®-winner James Lapine and choreographed by Tony Award®-winner Andy Blankenbuehler.
Anthony Warlow made his music debut with the Australian Opera at the age of 19 in Benjamin Britten's A Midsummer Night's Dream. Being awarded the Joan Sutherland Scholarship enabled him to further his career in opera, with roles in The Magic Flute, La Bohème, Tosca, Otello, The Tales of Hoffman (with Dame Joan Sutherland), Romeo and Juliet and Don Giovanni.
Warlow's musical theatre career began in 1985 with the London National Theatre's production of Guys and Dolls. He created the role of Enjolras in the Australian production of Les Miserables, a performance which won him a place on the Grammy Award-winning International Cast recording. Other productions include The Secret Garden, Man of La Mancha, My Fair Lady, Grease the Arena Spectacular, A Little Night Music, and a healthy catalogue of Gilbert & Sullivan's comic operas.
Warlow's performance in the title role of The Phantom of the Opera (1990 and 2007-2009), set the seal on his status as Australia's premier stage performer. He received the prestigious Advance Australia Award for Contribution to Music Theatre in 1991 for his performance, Gold and Platinum sales of his solo albums and in 1998 Anthony was honored by the nation and the National Trust being elected a Living National Treasure.
His concert performances include sharing the stage with Australia's Symphony Orchestras, as well as the London Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2011, he created the role of Dr.Yurii Zhivago in the Australian premiere production of Doctor Zhivago: the Musical, based on the Nobel Prize winning novel by Boris Pasternak, with a score by Lucy Simon (The Secret Garden). Warlow was thrilled to be asked to help celebrate the 25th Anniversary of The Phantom of the Opera at London's Royal Albert Hall in October of last year.
Two-time Tony Award® winner Katie Finneran stars as Miss Hannigan and 11-year-old Lilla Crawford (Billy Elliot) will star as Annie, with Emily Rosenfeld as Molly, the littlest orphan; Tyrah Skye Odoms as Kate, the next-to-littlest orphan; Junah Jang as Tessie, the cry-baby orphan; Georgi James as Pepper, the toughest orphan; Madi Rae DiPietro as July, the quietest orphan and Taylor Richardson as Duffy, the biggest orphan. Jaidyn Young will be the standby for the roles of Annie, Pepper, Duffy and July. Richardson will understudy the role of Annie. Additional casting will be announced soon.
ANNIE will go on sale to American Express cardholders on Wednesday, June 6. For tickets, call 800-755-3000 or visit Ticketmaster.com. Tickets will be available to the general public on Monday, June 25. Group tickets for ANNIE are now on sale. For groups of 12 or more, contact Nederlander Sales & Patron Services at 212-840-3890/800-714-8452 or email email@example.com for details.
The original production of ANNIE opened April 21, 1977 at the Alvin Theatre and went on to win the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Musical, seven Drama Desk Awards including Best Musical, the Grammy for Best Cast Show Album and seven Tony Awards®, including Best Musical, Best Book (Thomas Meehan) and Best Score (Charles Strouse, Martin Charnin). The show was one of the biggest Broadway musical hits of the 1970s, running for almost six years and playing 2,377 performances.
The score for ANNIE includes "Maybe," "It's the Hard Knock Life," "You're Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile," "Easy Street," "I Don't Need Anything But You" and the eternal anthem of optimism, "Tomorrow".
The creative team includes scenic design by Drama Desk Award-winner David Korins, costume design by Tony Award-winner Susan Hilferty, lighting design by two-time Tony Award-winner Donald Holder and sound design by Tony Award-winner Brian Ronan. Music director is Todd Ellison. Hair and wig design is by Tom Watson. Casting is by Telsey + Company. Animal training is by Tony Award-winner William Berloni.
ANNIE will be produced on Broadway by Arielle Tepper Madover, Roger Horchow, Sally Horchow, Roger Berlind, Roy Furman, Debbie Bisno, Stacey Mindich, Nederlander Presentations, Inc., Jane Bergère/Daryl Roth and Eva Price/Christina Papagjika.