“Annie” Opens in Cultural District; Toasters Up at Club Cafe (CPs Tues., 10/28/14)

Annie Image Art

1) Alas, the comic strip Little Orphan Annie is defunct. There aren’t many who remember the strip in its heyday, when Annie  was rescued from death-defying encounters with brutal arch-villains by Daddy Warbucks’ hit man Punjab. Yet the 1977 musical lives on. This Annie is still winning the hearts of new generations with its carnage-free, more upbeat rendering of the plucky orphan and her adoptive dad. ANNIE—written by Charles Strouse, Martin Charnin, and Thomas Meehan—offers the lesson that cultural icons can evolve over time. Another is that you can join the fun by catching the road-show production of Annie on its stop here. Bring the kids; it opens tonight at 7:30 p.m. with a free preshow talk. Runs through Nov. 2. Part of the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s PNC Broadway Across America series. 7:30 p.m. Benedum Center, 237 7th St., Cultural District.

2) Formed by a bunch of New York City comic book store employees in 1981, The Toasters may have done more than anyone to transform ska from the Jamaican-ized take on American R&B of the ’60s into the fierce, jumpy punk subgenre it is today. They did this not just through their own discography but from the swell of bands that signed with their Moon Ska Records, the first U.S. label specializing in ska. Today, Club Cafe has the honor of hosting The Toasters as the marquee act, with The Skunk 11 and The Slobberknockers supporting. 8 p.m. 56 – 58 South 12th St., South Side.

3) Our Pens take on the New Jersey Devils this evening at 7 p.m. Under new head coach Mike Johnson, we’re seeing more coordinated attack formations on opponents goals, which has produced some nice results. Consol Energy Center, 1001 Fifth Ave., Uptown.

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Rick Handler

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