When country girl Annie Oakley accepts a shooting challenge and quickly finds that “There’s No Business Like Show Business,” she reminds her partner that “Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better,” but when she falls in love, she also learns, “You Can’t Get A Man With A Gun.”
This is the story of “Annie Get Your Gun” in a nutshell, the Irving Berlin musical based on the book by Herbert and Dorothy Fields, being performed by the Chetco Pelican Players. The song titles are just three of many that are performed during the production.
Oakley, played by Tawndy Davidson, is a farm girl from Ohio who must shoot game to feed her family. Because she is poor, she has learned to make every bullet count. When “Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show and Congress of Rough Riders from Around the World” comes into town, they begin to set up in front of a hotel. The hotel owner Foster Wilson (Tommy Jones) asks that the show find another location, but the show’s pitchman Charlie Davenport (Lon Goddard) strikes up a deal that the company will leave if Wilson can find a marksman better than Frank Butler (Erick Gothard). Wilson accepts the challenge, meets Oakley and puts her against Butler.
Oakley defeats Butler, and she is enlisted in the show.
Tension builds between Oakley and Butler because she instantly falls in love with him, but he can’t handle “Little Miss Sure Shot” – the nickname given to her by Chief Sitting Bull, played by Ty Crowe – being much better than he is.
Meanwhile, Buffalo Bill (Mike Moran) is fighting his own battle with rival showman Pawnee Bill (Bruce Ellis), who brings Butler to his show, leaving the questions: Will Buffalo Bill come back on top after losing Frank Butler? Will Annie Oakley get to work with, and win the heart of, Frank Butler again? These questions are wrapped up at the end of the play.
Also cast in this musical are Ariel Farris as Dolly Tate, Davenport’s assistant; Mika Andreason, Cydol Hall, Holly Carr and Micah Teague as Oakley’s children. Other characters and townspeople are played by John Brooks, Kelley Scruggs, Daisy Carr, Sean Paul Farris, James Davidson, Teri McGregor, Jason Liddell, Steven Scruggs, Kathleen Teague, Mike Vest, Karen DeLucca, Kim Scruggs and Ethan Brendmoen.
Fine singing and excellent acting make this production appropriate for the entire family. Performance are at 7:30 p.m. today (April 21), Friday and Saturday, April 27 and 28, and 2 p.m. Sundays, April 22 and 29. Tickets for this musical are $15 for adults, and $6 for students. Tickets are available in Brookings at Chetco Pharmacy and Gifts, Wright’s Custom Framing and Art Supplies, and in Harbor at New Wave Video. A special children’s price of $2 will be offered on Saturday nights, but only at the door.
Performances are at the Chetco Playhouse, 1240 Chetco Ave., Brookings.
For information call 541-469-1857.