Battle Mountain’s spring musical ‘Annie Get Your Gun’ runs Thursday through Saturday
If You Go ...
What: “Annie Get Your Gun,” Battle Mountain High School’s spring musical.
When: Thursday, March 31, to Saturday, April 2; 6:30 p.m. doors open, 7 p.m. curtain.
Where: Battle Mountain High School auditorium, 151 Miller Ranch Road, Edwards.
Cost: $10 students, $15 adults.
More information: Tickets are available at the door.
‘Annie Get Your Gun’ cast
• Luis Juarez, Frank Butler
• Wyatt Harwood, Buffalo Bill Cody
• Berit Kirchner, Dolly Tate
• Sam Litt, Tommy Keeler
• Naomi Kuntz, Winnie Tate
• Blake Peterson, Charlie Davenport
• Kingston Lindner, Foster Wilson
• Aiden Woodworth, Mac the Prop Girl
• Shepard Stone, Chief Sitting Bull
• Karen Munoz, Annie Oakley
• Nima Sherpa, Jessie, Annie’s sister
• Bella Rubis, Nellie, Annie’s sister
• Joslyn Sanchez, Little Jake, Annie’s brother
• Eliot Hutchinson, Pawnee Bill
• Lindsay Poff, Mrs. Sylvia Potter Porter
• Anabel Johnson, Mrs. Schuyler Adams
If the cast of Battle Mountain High School’s “Annie Get Your Gun,” is correct — and they are — there really is no business like show business.
“Annie Get Your Gun” opens tonight in the Battle Mountain High School auditorium and runs through Saturday.
Karen Munoz is Annie Oakley, and Luis Juarez is Frank Butler, the sharp-shooting star of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show. Wyatt Harwood is spot-on as the showman Buffalo Bill Cody.
Munoz asked for any character because anything would be fine. She just loves being on stage and looks like she was born to do it.
“I thought about it, everyone would. I wasn’t set on it, but I’m glad to have it,” Munoz said of her role.
Juarez wasn’t really looking to be center stage, either. Like Munoz, anywhere on stage was fine with him.
Neither she nor Juarez shoot actual firearms, generally. Then again, it’s not really necessary for them to be convincing.
It’s called acting, and they’re pretty good at it. However …
Juarez does have some experience with shooting sports — sort of. He and some friends were hanging out one day when someone’s little brother picked up a BB gun. They told the kid to put it down, but he swung is around and accidentally pulled the trigger. The BB popped Juarez in his right earlobe. No scars or damage, and he has a great story.
No Business Like Show Business
The songs get in your head and heart. They stay there, and you’re happy to have them. Juarez warms up by doing 20 or 30 pushups while singing “There’s No Business Like Show Business,” because there isn’t.
Most of these folks have worked together before. Juarez played guitar with percussionist Larry Dutmer, who regularly plays with keyboardist Dawn Poff.
Skyler Runke (Winne Tate) and Anabel Johnson worked tirelessly for hours designing and creating the women’s elaborate costumes.
Stage manager Hannah Gershenoff directs pretty much everything else. Handling a large group of actors (22 on stage and that many more in the crew) is a lot like herding extroverted cats.
“It’s fun. It’s a great group,” Gershenoff said, as she rushes off to handle yet another near disaster.
James Baumgardner heads Battle Mountain’s vocal music department and directs this play with Kaylee Brennand.
They did Cole Porter’s “Anything Goes” last year and got great feedback from students and the large crowds.
Baumgardner likes classic musical theater; large ensembles and lots of smaller roles create all kinds of opportunities for his students.
“The older classic musical theater seems to work better for high school voices,” Baumgardner said.
All about Annie
For the uninitiated, “Annie Get Your Gun” is a musical with lyrics and music by Irving Berlin and a book by Dorothy Fields and her brother Herbert Fields.
Annie Oakley (1860-1926), born Phoebe Ann Moses, is an actual person from Darke County, Ohio. Frank Butler was real too. The story is a version of Oakley’s romance with Butler and Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show.
When the traveling Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show visits Cincinnati, Ohio, Oakley and her family make the trek to the Queen City to see it. Frank Butler, the show’s handsome, womanizing star (“I’m a Bad, Bad Man”), challenges anyone in town to a shooting match. Foster Wilson (Kingston Lindner), a local hotel owner, doesn’t appreciate the Wild West Show taking over his hotel, so Frank gives him a side bet of $100 on the match. Annie Oakley enters and shoots a bird off Dolly Tate’s (Berit Kirchner’s) hat, and then explains her simple backwoods ways to Wilson with the help of her siblings (“Doin’ What Comes Natur’lly”). When Wilson learns she’s a brilliant shot, he enters her in the shooting match against Butler.
That’s where the romance begins.
It had long runs on Broadway (1,147 performances), in London, and there was a 1950 film version and multiple television versions.
You’ve heard this music before: “There’s No Business Like Show Business,” “Doin’ What Comes Natur’lly,” “You Can’t Get a Man with a Gun,” “They Say It’s Wonderful” and “Anything You Can Do.”
Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 or firstname.lastname@example.org.