“Annie Get Your Gun” Opens on July 1st in Ojai

Annie Get Your Gun” is one of only a handful of Broadway plays that break attendance records and continues to be revived on Broadway and across America, foreign countries and finally, Ojai, opening July 1 for the whole month.

It exemplifies the phrase “There’s No Business Like Show Business,” which is just one of Irving Berlin’s songs he wrote especially for it.

The musical is extra special because it’s such a pleasure, “a musical for the ages, one of the Broadway theater’s enduring triumphs … the melodies just shake out of it in an endless cascade, and the simple story is unexpectedly involving. We care!” said the New York Post after the 2001revival.

There’s also a love story of desire, featuring a strong female character who holds her own and more in a man’s world, and based on a true story about the legendary wild west. Phoebe Ann Mosey was literally born in a log cabin in 1860 and by age 12 was the chief provider for her large family because of her natural ability to shoot game for food. In fact, that prowess paid off the family’s mortgage.

Her fame spread when, on a lark, she beat (at age 15) the nation’s best marksman and trick shot, Frank Butler (Scott White). The two had an instant connection and were married, later becoming part of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West show. She became so popular that Frank quit to be her manager and suggested she needed a “professional name,” so Phoebe Ann became Annie Oakley (Holly Sewell), a name that honored a dear friend.

“The majority of the characters and relationships in the show are based on real historical people and events from the American Wild West era,” said Director Tracey Williams Sutton.

Those characters include the famed Buffalo Bill (Cecil Sutton) and his show time rival Pawnee Bill (Buddy Wilds) and Chief Sitting Bull (Armando Hernandez), set during the rough riding days when the Wild West shows were as popular as rock shows are today.

So get to “Annie Get Your Gun” from July 1 – 31 at Ojai ACT, 113 S. Montgomery St.; at 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays. Tickets are only $20 general, $18 for seniors and Art Center members and $15 for students. Reserve your seat at 640-8797 or online: www.OjaiACT.org.

The Details:

“Annie Get Your Gun” is the rough riding, exciting fictionalized love story of sharpshooters Annie Oakley and Frank Butler in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West show, composed to the beloved songs of Irving Berlin. This Tony Award winning musical runs from July 1 – 31 at Ojai ACT, 113 S. Montgomery St.; at 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays. Tickets are only $20 general, $18 for seniors and Art Center members and $15 for students. Reserve your seat at (805) 640-8797 or online: www.OjaiACT.org.

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