Annie Co-Authors Issue Counter Statement Regarding National Tour

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25 Feb 2014

Tony Award-winning Annie composer Charles Strouse and book writer Thomas Meehan have released a statement countering opinions expressed by lyricist-director Martin Charnin in a Playbill.com interview about a forthcoming national tour of the Tony-winning musical.

Charnin, who staged the original Tony-winning production of Annie, as well as a short-lived 1997 Broadway revival, will direct the upcoming Troika Entertainment non-Equity national tour of the musical that will launch this fall.

In a story published Feb. 24, Mr. Charnin stated that the writers had given their blessing for a national tour that would present a return to their original vision of the heartfelt musical comedy, rather than sending out the recent Broadway revival, which was previously announced to tour.

"The entire creative team (Tom, Charles, and I) simply had to restore the charm and the magic of the musical, that has endured for lo, these many years, and that seemed to veer off-course in the recent Broadway production," Charnin told Playbill.com in an email interview.

Mr. Strouse and Mr. Meehan, in a counter statement provided Feb. 25 by press representatives for the Broadway revival, offered the following:



"Neither of us were interviewed for the article in which Martin Charnin speaks for the three original creators of Annie. Contrary to Martin, we admired James Lapine’s vision for the Broadway revival. Did we miss some moments from the past? Of course, but the production held many new and inspired surprises, including the big tap-dancing number that made for an exciting finale. Our stars, Katie Finneran, Anthony Warlow, Jane Lynch, Faith Prince and the rest of the cast, including those adorable orphans, wowed happy audiences at the Palace Theatre for nearly a year and a half. Producer Arielle Tepper Madover and her partners, as well as her entire creative team, were attentive to every detail and approached the revival with the utmost integrity. We are deeply grateful to the hard-working and brilliant Arielle, a woman of extraordinary dedication and sweetness, and to her first-class team for introducing another generation to our beloved musical."

Mr. Charnin did not respond to Playbill.com's request to comment on the statement made by Strouse and Meehan. Representatives for the 2012 Broadway production stated that producers passed on their previously announced plans to tour the revival.