Martin Charnin, Who Helped Create ‘Annie,’ Dies at 84 | Modern Society of USA

Martin Charnin, Who Helped Create ‘Annie,’ Dies at 84

Martin Charnin, Who Helped Create ‘Annie,’ Dies at 84

But, as Mr. Charnin recalled, he and Mr. Strouse later flipped the order of the songs, to let “Maybe” immediately establish Annie’s desire to become part of a family. She sings:

So, maybe now this prayer’s

The last one of its kind.

Won’t you please, come get your baby?

Maybe.

Mr. Charnin reunited with Richard Rodgers for the musical “I Remember Mama” in 1979; directed and wrote the lyrics to “The First” (1981), a musical about Jackie Robinson, with music by Bob Brush; and directed a comedy revue starring Sid Caesar, which closed after five performances in 1989.

The next year, Mr. Charnin, Mr. Strouse and Mr. Meehan collaborated again on “Annie 2: Miss Hannigan’s Revenge,” which opened at the Kennedy Center in Washington and quickly closed after dismal reviews. Four years later they teamed up for “Annie Warbucks,” about the search for a wife for Daddy Warbucks that would give Annie two parents.

As the second sequel, “Annie Warbucks,” staged at the Variety Arts Theater in the East Village in Manhattan, represented a course correction from the poorly received “Annie 2.”

“We told it from the point of view of the evil Miss Hannigan, and it was the wrong way to do it,” Mr. Charnin told Mr. Rose.

He returned regularly to direct the original “Annie,” most recently on a national tour from 2014 to 2015.

Before his death, he had been working on a revue featuring songs by famous composers about New York City; it was to open in December at the Triad Theater on the Upper West Side. But it will not go on without him.

“I had met with Martin a few times,” Peter Martin, the theater’s owner, said in an email, “and we were scheduled to meet again this past Monday to go over budgets. But Martin was at the doctor’s office and not feeling well.”

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