We are putting on a production of Annie JR with our 4th and 5th graders. Our school is a Title I school in Georgia. Our funds are extremely limited and parent involvement is scarce. Can anyone help with how to design scenery etc.
Many of us have limited expereince with producing a show, but we want to make this great for our kids. Any ideas/links to Annie JR production would be great!!
If you can't find anyone to paint flats for you, I'd say just have a couple of moving platforms and suggest the scenes with lighting. It certainly isn't the traditional Annie, but I think it might work.
We made styrofoam cut outs that we put around for each different setting. You can easily figger out how to stand them up and they are very cartoony which is where Annie came from. We did it about 10 years ago so I can't remember exactly what the pieces were, but I think we had a grandfather's clock. Easy to carry on and off!
WALLY MEIER has a book out that gives a working scene design for Annie Jr. and many of the Junior titles. (Taken from the JTF page): Wally has developed a set concept that is geared to the Junior collection of shows. His "one-set-fits-all" design will hopefully accommodate all of these productions, making the transitions from one season to the next easy. All the art work will be provided for in such a way that your students can participate in its construction. I believe his book is available from MTI.
The best thing I did for my theatre is have frames on wheels constructed out of wood a couple inches smaller than a king sized sheet. Mostly they are covered with black sheets staple gunned on and sometimes we paint a backdrop on muslin and staple gun them on and sometimes we put paneling on them for interior walls. They move easily (bricks are on the back brace where the wheels are for balast), can go on stage or in the house for some off stage areas...I love them.
MTI does have production slides available for this title. Some groups have used the production slides as projected scenery from behind a scrim and others have project the slides onto flats so that they can trace the scenery and then paint it.
I would use the slides then add a couple of simple set elements. Miss Hannigan's desk, Warbuck's desk, a fancy chair at the Warbucks. NYC can be done with just the slide, but add elements like someone carrying a newspaper, umbrella, etc to emphasize the outdoors.
THANKS EVERYONE for the great advice. it is much appreciated!
I have always been successful obtaining large sheets of thick styrofoam boards from Home Depot. Peel the plastic coating and you have a double sided piece of scenery. Then we build little stands from thin pvc piping. It's cheap and light enough that students can move the scenery!
Also - the pieces can line up[ side by sid ean create a full back drop, or you can choose to use one or two at different parts of the stage!
Your school situation and budget constraints ring very familiar to my situation when I piloted the original show in 1995 Mike! Title one school etc.! At that time, I used a 4x6 double hinged flat,(sheet covered and painted) for orphanage suggestion, simple period desk and radio as well as student drawn FDR painting on SR for Ms. Hannigans office. The servants brought in rug, furniture etc. in through the the house for Warbucks mansion. NYC was done with a "star drop"...twinkle lights inserted into a backdrop with a street lamp in front. Today we have the luxury of light insulation to paint and move etc. The true essence is the charming and touching story...don't apologize for lack of scenery, it makes us MORE creative, many times tells the story better and showcases the kids to a new level. Hope you will share pics!
If any of your students are in Girl Scouts, the brownie uniforms with the jumpers are really cute as orphan outfits, you can just have the kids wear them inside out for a more ragamuffin look, with dirty looking white t-shirts underneath.
I'm trying to find the book by Wally Meier... Any updates on where I can find this?