DOZENS of Thurrock youngsters are to tread the boards of the Thameside Theatre in a production of hit musical Annie.

Presented by Rare Productions, the UK’s largest youth musical theatre production company, the show features a 70 strong cast of local young people, aged eight to 18, and is the first production from Rare’s newly formed Thurrock group.

Later this year, a new film version of Annie, starring Jamie Foxx and Cameron Diaz, will hit the big screen.

But this weekend, you can catch some of the borough’s most talented youngsters perform their take on the timeless musical.

Based on the strip cartoon Little Orphan Annie, the musical tells the story of Annie, a young girl living in an orphanage run by the sadistic Miss Hannigan and her quest to find her real parents.

She is invited to spend Christmas at the home of billionaire Oliver Warbucks, who offers to help Annie in her quest.

Enlisting the help of his powerful friends, including the President of the United States, the search for Annie’s parents produces some unexpected results.

Featuring such well known songs as ‘Tomorrow’ ‘Hard Knock Life’ and ‘NYC’, this production is likely to delight audiences both young and old.

Saturday performances of the show are already sold out, but tickets are still available for Thursday and Friday evening, priced at £14 and £12.

Tickets can be bought from the theatre box office 0845 300 5264 or online. Performances start at 7.30pm.

Rare’s next production with the Thurrock group will be the huge Disney hit High School Musical and open auditions for this will be held on May 15 and 18.