Annie at the Thrasher Horne! Q&A with Annie

February 2, 2016 0 comments Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

The Thrasher-Horne Center for the Arts continues its groundbreaking inaugural season under new Executive Director Denton Yockey with a two night performance of the smash Broadway tour of Annie this Thursday and Friday, February 4th & 5th, 2016. Join us after the jump for more information and an exclusive Q&A with the young lead of the production, Heidi Gray!

Leapin' Lizards!
The world's best-loved musical returns in time-honored form.

Directed by the original Lyricist and Director Martin Charnin and Choreographed by Liza Gennaro, this production of Annie will be a brand new incarnation of the iconic original. Featuring a book and score by Tony Award® winners Thomas Meehan, Charles Strouse and Martin Charnin, Annie includes such unforgettable songs as "It's the Hard Knock Life," "Easy Street," "I Don't Need Anything But You," plus the eternal anthem of optimism, "Tomorrow."

Annie’s enchanting tale and catchy tunes have been a beloved family musical for generations.  It’s been performed around the world in 28 different languages for the past 37 years.  The national touring production will be performing in the Jacksonville area at Thrasher-Horne Center on February 4th and 5th.  In preparation for their stop, we had the opportunity to ask Heidi Gray some questions about what it’s like to play the title role of Annie:

You’ve been acting for quite a while.  How old are you now? What is it you enjoy about acting?  Other than Annie, do you have a favorite part that you’ve played before?
I’m 11 years old. What I like about acting is I get to be a different personality each character I play.  Other than Annie, my favorite part I’ve played is Gretl in The Sound of Music.

So many people love the story of Annie.  What do you love about the character? How is she most like you?
What I love about Annie is that she never gives up and is optimistic.  Annie is most like me because we are both outgoing and are leaders.

Few people get a chance to act with an animal on stage.  What’s it like to work with Macy and Sunny who both play Sandy in the show? Does anything unpredictable ever happen?
Macy and Sunny are the smartest animals I have ever met, and I’m so lucky to be working with such professionals.  Everything is going great so far with the dogs.

We see you are a South Carolina native, so not too far from home in the Southeast.  How many months have you been traveling now?  What’s the furthest state the Annie tour will be traveling to?
I have been on tour since December 29, 2015. The farthest state we are going to is Oregon.

Casts of productions usually become very close while working together.  Have you made any friends during the tour?  Who’s the funniest person in the cast in real life?
Yes, I have made lots of friends on this journey.  And the funniest person, from the cast, in real life is Madisen.  She is the Orphan Swing.

You have a beautiful singing voice.  What’s your favorite song to sing from the show?
Thank you.  My favorite song to sing from the show is “Maybe” because it is a song about Annie being hopeful about her future.

Balancing the tour with school must be quite a challenge.  How do you and the other actresses playing the orphans go to school while on tour? What’s your favorite subject?
We do school on our computers and we also have a teacher that travels with us.  My favorite subject is Language Arts.

In the second act Annie gets to meet President Franklin D. Roosevelt. If you could meet any famous person, who would it be and why?
If I could meet any famous person it would be Sutton Foster because she is my role model.

Don’t miss Heidi and the entire cast of Annie at Thrasher-Horne Center Thursday, February 4 and Friday, February 5 at 7:00 PM!

The Thrasher-Horne Center is a not-for profit performing arts venue and conference center owned and operated by St. Johns River State College located on the Orange Park campus at 283 College Drive in Orange Park, Florida. Tickets are available through the Box Office at (904) 276-6815 or online at