Annie showstoppers hit top note for Sydenham High production


Sydenham High’s Year 6 stepped out in style for their end of year production this week – the marvellous musical Annie.

The cast of 40 students had their audience entranced by their great characterisations and cheering the powerful delivery of the musical’s famous showstopper tunes Tomorrow and It’s a Hard Knocks Life.

Slick choreography and spotless timing ensured a faultless flow of the action as the heart-warming story of orphan Annie’s story unfolded on the Westwood Theatre stage.

And the display of talent was not restricted to the stage performances.  The entire backstage operation was also masterminded by the students too – from lighting and sound to props and costumes.

Preparing for the show has also been linked to learning.  The musical is set between the wars at the time of the Great Depression – the period being studied by Year 6 this term. As part of their preparation for the play, the cast researched many aspects of the Great Depression – some of which are directly referred to in the musical – as well as the Presidency of Franklin D Roosevelt who also appears in the play.

“Our production of Annie is the summation of a fantastic collaborative approach to developing a fresh and exciting retelling of a class musical,” said Claire Boyd, Head of Sydenham High Junior School. “Many of the girls have grown up loving the songs and have relished the opportunity to make them their own. The staging, lighting and props are all their own creation and the result has been very impressive.”

With childhood hardships in mind, the students chose an appropriate charity to benefit from a retiring collection at their performances. Buttle UK helps children and young people in need across the country to give them a better future – whether by buying them basic furniture or paying for a homeless teenagers’ college course. The charity was selected after its Chief Executive Gerri McAndrew came and spoke to Year 6 about its work.