Meet Carly Grande who is performing in Annie

Lyric Arts had a chance to interview Carly Grande, who is performing as Tessie  in Annie. Read on to hear what she has to say about her experience thus far.

LA: Tell us a little bit about why this particular play interested you

CG: This play has been my dream play to be in since about two years ago when a friend was in it and I went to see her.

LA: For those that are unfamiliar with Annie can you tell us about the show?

CG: Annie is a story about a tough, hopeful orphan who gets to spend Christmas with a multibillionaire in the 1930s.

LA: Talk about the character v(s) that you play in Annie. How have you developed this character?

CG: Well, at the first read through, I really just focused on making my character, Tessie, sound whining and unhappy. But now I really have dug deeper and really created this whole person. Yes, she is still whiny, but now I know her, and don’t just think of her as “the whiny one.”

LA: Why should people come and see Annie?

CG: Only because it’s the most awesome show ever! Also, it’s almost guaranteed to make you laugh and cry, possibly at the same time.

LA: Talk about your fellow cast members, how do you see their characters developing? Any that you are particularly amazed at?

CG: Everyone is really amazing, but the ensemble I am particularly shocked at. Most of them play two or three parts, and they all have each of them fully developed and natural. Also, Miss Hannigan, Rooster, and Lily are incredible. Regan (Annie) is just unbelievably talented.

LA: What do you feel are the "wow" elements of Annie?

CG: The choreography is stunning. Period. Plus, we have some iconic voices. Annie, Miss Hannigan, the ensemble people, and my fellow orphans. 

LA: What is your favorite aspect of the show?

CG: Probably Easy Street, NYC, or Hard Knock Life. Also, this doesn’t really have to do with the show itself, but I love how the cast is like a big family. This is my first show with adult actors, and its one of the best experiences of my life.

LA: Tell us what is something that you are particular excited about this show coming to together? For example, a certain scene, costumes, set, lights, etc?

CG: Costumes and set, for sure. I am going to be so happy when the orphans can have our real beds instead of the benches we’ve been using for rehearsal. Costumes are going to be really good, especially because this is one of my first shows that’s going to have really big costumes.

LA: What is your favorite musical to watch?

CG: My favorite is probably either The Sound of Music with Julie Andrews, or The Lion King.  

LA: What is your favorite thing to do around the holidays?

CG: Spend time with my family or friends, or cuddle with my dog Zaila.

LA: Which do you like better Annie the movie or the stage version?

CG: Stage version. Period.

LA: Where and how will you have the energy to do 24 shows?

CG: I love performing. The adrenaline and energy from simply being on stage will be enough. Of course, I’ll be tired sometimes, but I’m hoping that left over Halloween candy will fix that.

LA: To date what is your favorite role that you have played and why?

CG: It’s a tie in between Tessie and Gwenivere, which I played last year in school. Tessie because its so fun to be with the other orphans and plus, like I mentioned before, Annie is my dream show. Gwenivere because it was great to be all queenly and everything, and my costume was awesome.

LA: What is your dream character to play on stage?

CG: Either Miss Hannigan or Maria from The Sound of Music. But that’s only so far, of course.

LA: Please tell us a little bit about yourself?

CG: I’m eleven (and a half). I am in the sixth grade at Oak Hill Montessori, a private school. I love reading, dogs, singing, dancing, and acting.

LA: Any other area that you would like to comment on?

CG: This show is going to be amazing. Please come!