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BREAKING NEWS: Jane Lynch to Replace Katie Finneran as 'Miss Hannigan' in ANNIE Beginning May 16

BREAKING NEWS: Jane Lynch to Replace Katie Finneran as 'Miss Hannigan' in ANNIE Beginning May 16

Emmy Award-winning actress Jane Lynch, who stars in the hit FOX television show "Glee" as ruthless cheerleading coach Sue Sylvester, will take on another great tyrannical role as evil orphanage matron Miss Hannigan in the new Broadway production of Annie at the Palace Theatre (1564 Broadway between 46th and 47th Streets). Lynch, a stage veteran of Chicago's Steppenwolf Theatre Company and The Second City, will be making her Broadway debut. She will play Miss Hannigan for eight weeks only, from Thursday, May 16 through Sunday, July 14.

Two-time Tony Award-winning actress Katie Finneran, who created the role of Miss Hannigan in the new production of Annie, will depart the production at a date to be announced, in order to begin filming a new NBC comedy series with Michael J. Fox.

"Some may say I know a thing or two about playing intimidating authority figures," Jane Lynch said. "So I am excited and honored to be making my Broadway debut with the wonderful Annie company at the Palace Theatre and joining the pantheon of women who have taken on the great and irresistible role of wicked Miss Hannigan."

"I am forever indebted to the creative team and producers of Annie. They made a dream come true for me by giving me the chance to play Miss Hannigan on Broadway. And now they have been unbelievably generous in recognizing what a unique opportunity this television series is for my family and me," Katie Finneran commented. "I am so grateful to them for making it possible for me to begin filming the series this summer and I can't wait to come back and see the goddess Jane Lynch bring down the house at the Palace."

Jane Lynch's theatrical credits include The Second City, Steppenwolf Theatre and many church basements throughout the Chicagoland area. Recent film credits include A.C.O.D, Three Stooges, Wreck-It Ralph, Julie & Julia, Shrek Forever After, The Post Grad Survival Guide, Paul and Brownie Masters. Past film work includes Christopher Guest's For Your Consideration, A Mighty Wind and Best in Show, as well as Role Models, The Rocker, Spring Breakdown, the animated film Space Chimps, Alvin and the Chipmunks, Walk Hard, Talladega Nights, The 40 Year old Virgin, Margaret Cho's Celeste and Bam Bam, Alan Cumming's Suffering Man's Charity, Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events, Sleepover and Surviving Eden. She currently stars in the Ryan Murphy television series "Glee" on FOX for which she is an Emmy and Golden Globe winner for portraying the iconic television character, Sue Sylvester. Some of her other recent credits include the STARZ series "Party Down," "Lovespring," a Lifetime original series, "Desperate Housewives" and "Weeds" as well as the last season of "The L Word" opposite Cybill Shepherd. She has recurring roles on "Two and a Half Men," "Criminal Minds" and "The New Adventures of Old Christine". Jane's play Oh Sister, My Sister! had runs at the Tamarind Theatre and Bang Theater, garnering the LA Weekly Comedy Ensemble of the Year Award. Jane also authored the autobiography Happy Accidents, which topped several national best sellers list, including the New York Times and Los Angeles Times.

ANNIE features a book by Thomas Meehan, music by Charles Strouse and lyrics by Martin Charnin, with all three authors receiving 1977 Tony Awards for their work. Annie is directed by Pulitzer Prize and three-time Tony Award-winner James Lapine and choreographed by Tony Award-winner Andy Blankenbuehler. The production is playing at the Palace Theatre (1564 Broadway, between 46th and 47th Streets).

ANNIE stars two-time Tony Award winner Katie Finneran as Miss Hannigan, Australian star Anthony Warlow making his Broadway debut as Daddy Warbucks and 11-year-old Lilla Crawford as Annie, with Brynn O'Malley as Grace Farrell, Clarke Thorell as Rooster Hannigan, and J. Elaine Marcos as Lily St. Regis. The Orphans are Madi Rae DiPietro as July, Georgi James as Pepper, Junah Jang as Tessie, Tyrah Skye Odoms as Kate, Taylor Richardson as Duffy, Emily Rosenfeld as Molly, Brooklyn Shuck as standby for Molly, Kate, Tessie, July and Duffy, Sadie Sink as standby for Annie, Tessie, Duffy, July and Kate and Jaidyn Young as standby for Annie, Pepper, Duffy and July. The production also features Ashley Blanchet, Jane Blass, Jeremy Davis, Fred Inkley, Merwin Foard, Joel Hatch, Danette Holden, Amanda Lea LaVergne, Gavin Lodge, Liz McCartney, Desi Oakley, Keven Quillon, David Rossetti, Sarah Solie, Dennis Stowe and Ryan VanDenBoom.

Anthony Warlow is appearing with the permission of Actors' Equity Association. The Producers gratefully acknowledge Actors' Equity Association for its assistance with this production.

The original production of Annie opened April 21, 1977 at the Alvin Theatre and went on to win the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Musical, seven Drama Desk Awards including Best Musical, the Grammy for Best Cast Show Album and seven Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Best Book (Thomas Meehan) and Best Score (Charles Strouse, Martin Charnin). The show was one of the biggest Broadway musical hits of the 1970s, running for almost six years and playing 2,377 performances.

The score for Annie includes "Maybe," "It's the Hard Knock Life," "You're Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile," "Easy Street," "I Don't Need Anything But You" and the eternal anthem of optimism, "Tomorrow".

The creative team includes scenic design by Drama Desk Award-winner David Korins, costume design by Tony Award-winner Susan Hilferty, lighting design by two-time Tony Award-winner Donald Holder and sound design by Tony Award-winner Brian Ronan. Projection design is by Wendall K. Harrington. Music director is Todd Ellison. Orchestrations are by Michael Starobin. Dance music arrangements are by Alex Lacamoire. Musical coordinator is Patrick Vaccariello. Hair and wig design is by Tom Watson. Casting is by Telsey + Company. Animal training is by William Berloni.

In a dual effort to promote dog adoption and provide shelters with resources, PEDIGREE Food for Dogs and Annie have teamed up to help raise $1 million to help dogs find loving homes. For each Annie ticket sold through December 31, 2013, PEDIGREE will donate $2, up to $1 million, to PEDIGREE Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping dogs find loving homes. In addition, co-branded merchandise will be available at the theatre and online with 100 percent of the proceeds going to PEDIGREE Foundation. For more information on The PEDIGREE Adoption Drive and other brand initiatives, visit www.pedigree.com or www.facebook.com/pedigree.

ANNIE is produced on Broadway by Arielle Tepper Madover, Roger Horchow, Sally Horchow, Roger Berlind, Roy Furman, Debbie Bisno, Stacey Mindich, Nederlander Presentations, Inc., Jane Bergère/Daryl Roth and Eva Price/Christina Papagjika.

Tickets for Annie are available through www.ticketmaster.com, by calling 877-250-2929, or in person at the Palace Theatre box office (1564 Broadway between 46th and 47th Streets). Premium seating is available. Tickets are currently on sale through November 17, 2013.

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