STRAIGHT shooting comedy and some old fashioned, Broadway glitz is coming to The Q next week as the new Queanbeyan Players' production of Annie Get your Gun opens on Friday night.
Director Nina Stevenson and her cast have been rehearsing their dance moves and twanging, country accents for the classic love story of sharp shooters Annie Oakley and Frank Butler.
The production set to play at The Q is the updated, 1990s version of the much-loved musical, which maintains classic numbers like 'No business like show business' and 'Anything you can do', but cuts out a lot of the racism from the 1940s version.
"We're doing the 1999 revised version by Peter Stone, and that had several things that attracted us to it," Ms Stevenson said. "One was that it had less of the racist Indian jokes in it. It still gently teases about the Indians but it's not as racist as it was.
"And it has a couple of new numbers in it, which allows our choreographer- who's just done an amazing job with all the dances- to do a very clever piece of choreography in the ballroom scene.
"It's a musical comedy, with the emphasis on musical. But it is funny, it's fast, and the choreography is absolutely amazing," she said.
Actress Anita Davenport plays the leading role of Annie Oakley, a sharp shooter who starred in Buffalo Bill's Wild West, while Richard Block plays Frank Butler, the man Annie falls for in this western romance.
"It's a show within a show," Ms Stevenson said. "It's a Buffalo Bill Wild West show, and Buffalo Bill introduces this show as his version of the love story between Annie and Frank.
"The good thing about that ... is it's allowed us to depart from realism for just sheer entertainment," she said.
And Ms Stevenson praised the quality of this cast, and said Davenport in particular was the perfect Annie.
"We worried we wouldn't be able to find anybody to carry that role off, but she absolutely does. She was Annie from the moment she walked in the door.
"And the cast is a very, very talented cast and so enthusiastic. They bring their own humour to the show, and their own vitality which is quite obvious when you see it performed on stage.
"The three little kids we've got in it are absolutely wonderful. Little Jake, Annie's little brother, is only eight, and he'll blow the audience away. He's absolutely marvellous," she said.
*Catch 'Annie get your Gun' at The Q from Friday, November 1 to Saturday, November 16. Phone the Box Office on 6285 6290 for tickets or visit www.theq.net.au.
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