|FRANKIE LEONI (Young Calogero) Frankie is thrilled to make his touring debut in A Bronx Tale and continue in the role that he portrayed in the Broadway production! Thank you to Antonia DeNardo at Millennium Artists, my amazing team at Abrams Artists Agency, Tara Rubin Casting, the cast and crew, and FWCD School. Special thanks to my parents for their love & support, and a shoutout to my best friend and brother Rocco! Follow @leoniboyz|
|SHANE PRY (Young Calogero alt.) Shane is extremely grateful to make his professional debut in this awesome role and production! Other favorite performances include Willy Wonka Jr. (Charlie), “PA Live!” (television show), workshops inspired by Disney’s The Descendants (Ben), Frozen (Hans) and Shawnee Riverfest. Huge thanks to Marc, Anya, Paradigm, Tara Rubin Casting, the creative team, DANJ and all of his dance teachers, Christina, Danny, Midge, mom, dad, Cassidy, family/friends, and God.|
Twin Cities Arts Reader – 02/20/2019
“The real crime in A Bronx Tale is that child actor Frankie Leoni isn’t featured after the first several scenes. Sure, there’s violence, gambling, and outright murder going on – but after seeing Leoni’s effusive energy, charisma, and triple threat of acting, singing, and dancing, you really kind of wish that the whole show was about Young Calogero….The high-energy sequence of ‘Roll ‘Em’ and ‘I Like It’ (both of which heavily feature the excellent Leoni) is about as perfect a one-two combo as ever can be found … You might want to come back again, though, just to see Frankie Leoni rock in it scene after scene. Keep an eye on that kid, he’s going places.”
Twin Cities Pioneer Press – 02/20/2019
“Meanwhile, Frankie Leoni does a fine job with young Calogero as we watch him lose his innocence.”
Broadway World National Tours – 02/13/2019
“…we become invested in the story of young Calogero (played with confident aplomb by Frankie Leoni on open night in Nashville)…”
JHP Entertainment – 02/13/2019
“Opening night in Nashville featured Leoni in the role and I have to say, he absolutely stole the show. The young actor’s stage presence, timing, delivery and his ability to belt a tune and keep up with the rest of the cast as they perform Sergio Trujillo’s blissful choreography was mind-blowingly entertaining….I have to admit, I kept waiting for the full switch and inevitable exit of Leoni as the young Calogero, but was pleasantly surprised the talented young actor remained a central part of the story as long as he did.”
Nashville Parent – 02/13/2019
“…the 9-year-old version played by the enthusiastic Frankie Leoni…”
Carolina Curtain Call – 02/07/2019
“…a confident and spunky Frankie Leoni played an opening night the hearty youth role of Young Calogero…”
Run DMT – 02/01/2019
“Throughout the performance, two cast members truly stood out to me:…and Frankie Leoni (Young Calogero). The talents of these two young performers added a fun spunky softness and balance to the overt machismo. Not to mention the pipes on Bell and Leoni will blow you away.”
BroadwayWorld Tampa/St. Petersburg – 01/30/2019
“In his early years Young Calogero played with the upmost professionalism by Frankie Leoni witnesses a murder and is forced to participate in a line-up. … Commanding the stage and truly being the one to watch Frankie Leoni sang ‘I LIKE IT’ to the point where I was literally breathless, with such tremendous power in someone of his age he danced and sang larger than life on such a big stage and truly deserves mentioning.”
Dallas News – 12/31/2018
“The story begins with a murder witnessed by the 9-year-old Calogero, Palminteri’s given name, played with swagger and style by Burleson’s own Frankie Leoni (who alternates with Shane Pry at some performances.”
Datebook (San Francisco Chronicle) – 11/29/2018
“Leoni, as the younger Calogero…has the snappy zing to his dance moves of a much more mature performer.”
For All Events – 11/29/2018
“Memorable, in addition to a healthy peppering of humor and do-wop songs that instantly zoomed me back to the era, are Frankie Leoni as young Calogero…”
The Mercury News – 11/29/2018
“…spunky Frankie Leoni…”
San Francisco Examiner – 11/29/2018
“Calogero, played as a kid by the full-voiced Frankie Leoni…”
Outword Magazine – 11/22/2018
“Frankie Leoni is also excellent as the young Calogero.”
Culver City News – 11/19/2018
“…with Frankie Leoni stealing the show as Young Calogero in ‘Roll ‘Em’ as Sonny teaches him how to throw the dice with flare…”
Observations Along the Road – 11/16/2018
“Frankie/Shane…gave a remarkable performance: strong singing, strong dancing, strong voice, strong characterization. He was also a lot of fun to watch”
Daily Trojan – 11/15/2018
“…Leoni delights endlessly with his energy and musicality as young Calogero…”
Broadway World Los Angeles – 11/12/2018
“Leoni is a standout as little Calogero. It’s engaging to witness a boy’s unsteady development, and Leoni captures to perfection the difficulty of loving two paternal figures.”
The Fume of Sighs – 11/12/2018
“Young actors always capture the audience’s heart and Frankie Leoni, playing young Calogero, is no exception. But he has more than his youth going for him. His dancing flows out of him seemingly effortlessly.”
It’s Not About Me – 11/12/2018
“I know that Frankie Leoni, who plays the main character, Calogero, as a nine-year-old, has been playing the part since Broadway, but it still impressed me that he was so comfortable in front of the opening night audience in this very judgmental town.”
On Stage Blog – 11/12/2018
“Leoni is adorable onstage as he sings and dances with pizzazz beyond his age.”
Patch.com – 11/12/2018
“‘I Like It’ by 9-year-old Calogero (Frankie Leoni/Shane Pry, nearly stealing the show)…”
Los Angeles Daily News – 11/09/2018
“His dances look best, though, on tiny Leoni…the level of commitment yet ease with which the lad moves.”
Buffalo Theatre Guide – 10/20/2018
“His juvenile self, played in this production by Frankie Leoni, is a plum role for a young male on Broadway. The actor must be a true triple threat, and Leoni is up to the challenge. His performance benefits from being honed on Broadway.”
BroadwayWorld Central New York – 10/18/2018
“Young Calogero, played by Frankie Leoni, is an absolute thrill to watch on stage. He looks no older than 9 or 10 years old, and yet he had the entire audience in the palm of his hand. His singing and dancing were well beyond his years, but more impressive was the overall ‘greaser’ persona that he developed. There were surely many an audience member dying to pinch his cheeks.”
Democrat & Chronicle – 10/19/2018
“The show begins through the eyes of Young Calogero, superbly played in this performance by the heartwarmingly huggable Frankie Leoni, (also performed by Shane Pry) who, after witnessing the murder, becomes increasingly perplexed by the difference between good and bad and all the areas of gray in between.”
Rochester City Newspaper – 10/19/2018
“…and young Frankie Leoni plays the 9-year-old version of C for almost the entire first act. Both actors are incredibly strong leads, with stylized vocals and stunning focus amid the more than 18 musical numbers of the two-hour production.”
www Bios | Schedule | Reviews
ISSIE SWICKLE (Annie) from Davie, FL. National tour debut as "Annie!" Huge thanks to Broadway Kids Studio, Michelle Ameerally, Broadway Artists Alliance, Jennifer Johns, Jonathan Brenner, Nancy Carson, Joy Dewing, Verna and Family. Mom, Dad, Max this is for you!www
ANGELINA CARBALLO (July, Molly u/s) is a fun-loving nine year old who is thrilled to be in this amazing production. Thanks to Actor’s Playhouse, BAA, Carson-Adler, Troika Entertainment, Joy Dewing, STA, PPDC, Encore, family and friends for fueling her passion in musical theater.
ADIA DANT (Pepper, Annie u/s) is excited to make her Broadway Tour debut at age 9. Regional: Eastside Story, Peter Pan, Annie. Special thanks to God, My Family, Nancy Carson, Walker Clark, Bob Marks, Karen Dryer, Lynne Mlott, Julie Bandy, Lynn Herrick, Janine Molinari.
LILLYBEA IRELAND (Tessie) from Evansville, Indiana; enjoys singing, golf, and snuggling her dog Sweetie. Love and thanks to friends, family, parents & siblings (Andrew, Maddie, & Nick) who said dream BIG and follow it! Send smiles and follow her journey Twitter@lillybeaIreland 🙂
SYDNEY SHUCK (Kate) 11 years old, from New York . STAGE: School House Rock, Jr.; The Little Mermaid, Jr. (Ariel) FILM: Live a Little (Haley) . I want to thank GOD, my family, Nancy Carson & Peggy Stamps!
Lilly Mae Stewart
LILLY MAE STEWART (Molly) Lilly Mae's making her National Tour Debut! Showboat (Asolo Repertory), Whistle Down the Wind (Theatre Zone), Fiddler on the Roof (Free Fall), Entertainment Revue, Les Miserable, Annie. Kisses to Kathryn Mitchell, Cynthia Ashford, Trapper Felides, family & friends! www.backstage.com/kathryndutton-mitchell/www
ISABEL WALLACH (Duffy) is delighted to make her professional debut in Annie at 10! Special thanks to the Annie creative team, Joy Dewey Casting, Kristen, Amelia, Sue, Erin, and my Kidz Theater family. Much love to my amazing family and friends – especially Emma!
Baltimore Sun - 01/22/15
“[Swickle] delivers dialogue and songs confidently, and handles stage business like a pro...The ensemble of Annie's orphan pals is certainly a dynamic bunch, capable of gutsy singing and dancing (keep an eye on tiny Lilly Mae Stewart as Molly)."
DC Metro Arts - 01/21/15
“Annie may find happiness elsewhere, but audiences won’t be so eager to leave the delightful company of the little girls at Miss Hannigan’s orphanage. That pint-sized chorus line hits a homer with “It’s the Hard-Knock Life,” nailing all the regimented kicks and twirls while delivering Martin Charnin’s witty lyrics through adoringly toothy grins.
All the young actresses here are winners, with Lilly Mae Stewart as Molly melting most of the hearts as the moppets’ mascot. All of the others, ranging in age from 9 to 11, get oohs and awws of their own in that extended radio spot parody, “You’re Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile.”
Then again, this show’s little orphans have a truly first-rate performing model in young Issie Swickle, who is sensational as Annie. A belter with a distinctive and musical quality to her voice, Miss Swickle never misses a beat nor a punch line, and tugs at our heartstrings even when sharing the stage with another scene-stealer, like that handsome mutt that plays her dog Sandy (Macy or Sunny, depending on which performance you attend)."
MLife - 01/13/15
“West Michigan audiences are bound to be charmed by the all-in, enthusiastic performances of a large ensemble cast featuring seven children, including Issie Swickle as the title character. Swickle exudes confidence and spirit, transitioning easily from quiet solos ("Maybe") to energetic dance routines ("It's the Hard Knock Life") to big, show-stopping numbers ("Tomorrow"). She and Oliver "Daddy" Warbucks (Michigan's own Gilgamesh Taggett) have an easy chemistry, something they both share with the lovely Grace Farell (Ashley Edler)."
Vital Voice - 01/13/15
“Issie Swickle, who played Annie, did a knock out performance, but there are two other cast members I would like to give big props to Lilly Mae Stewart (Molly) and Lynn Andrews (Miss Hannigan). Molly is the youngest and smallest of the orphans, but Lilly brought her character to a level that took a stand above the rest. Being full of life and cute as a button, I look forward as to where her acting career takes her."
UT Daily Beacon - 01/08/15
“In this production, that little girl was Issie Swickle, whom otherwise should be known as the perfect Annie. For such a young person, she impressively commanded the stage with her powerful voice and enthusiasm. Waiting for something to go wrong proved fruitless as the show went on. She is Annie.
It seemed, though, that all the youngsters ruled the stage. Second only to Annie were the group of orphans she affectionately called ‘the kids.’ As the later hour approached, it seemed at some point they’d show their weariness, but like Swickle, all seven of them sang and danced like they’d been doing so for years. Often accompanied by no older actors on stage, they had free will to do just about whatever they wanted. They chose excellence."
The Daily Times - 01/07/15
“Issie Swickle...hit all the right notes and proved to be an enjoyable Annie."
Encore Michigan - 12/17/14
“On opening night, Annie was played by Adia Dant, and Dant's usual role of Pepper was played by Angela Pallaini. Dant was as adorable as one expects from Annie. Thanks to her charisma, costuming and red hair, she always owned the stage when she was on it. All eyes were drawn to this little spitfire who could alternately charm and flame. All of the orphans made a fantastic ensemble, their dances looking like a natural play and their songs simply the way they communicated with each other through the rough life they found themselves in."
Lansing City Pulse - 12/17/14
“As the title character, understudy Adia Dant did a remarkably serviceable job opening night."
Lansing State Journal - 12/17/14
“Much of that energy comes from the youngsters in the cast, who portray the orphans including Annie, who fail to be intimidated by the cruel Miss Hannigan who runs the orphanage. From their opening number, "It's a Hard Knock Life," charging about the stage with mops and buckets, these youngsters captivated the audience. That of course, includes Annie, who on opening night was played by an understudy, Adia Dant, substituting on an hour's notice for Issie Swickle, who is expected to return to the role for the rest of the run...she quickly hit her stride, and it was soon clear that this young actress could easily carry the show. She is a nimble dancer with a strong voice, and the ability to express Annie's spunkiness and optimism."
Vizion Magazine - 12/17/14
“Florida native, Issie Swickle, makes her National Tour debut as the title character, bringing energy and life to the iconic character. The nine year old actress proves to live up to the role as she sings some of Broadway most treasured numbers such as "Hard Knock Life" and "Tomorrow". Of course, Swickle is not alone on stage when it comes to child actors. She is accompanied by many talented young individuals who have embodied their roles as well. The orphans include Angelina Carballo, Adia Dant, LillyBea Ireland, Sydney Shuck, Lilly Mae Stewart, and Isabel Wallach."
Greater Lansing Theatre - 12/16/14
“The orphan ensemble was adorable and energetic."
RiverFront Times - 12/08/14
“Issie Swickle, who in the titular role of Annie delivers an unfailingly sunny performance, holds her own in numbers like "Tomorrow" and "Maybe." She plays well opposite Gilgamesh Taggett"
BroadwayWorld St. Louis - 12/03/14
“Issie Swickle does a very nice job as Annie, giving this spirited tyke just the right mix of spunk and pathos required by the role."
STL Today - 12/05/14
“The big, velvety orchestra lavishes the score with love — and so does Issie Swickle, who plays Annie. With her powerful voice and sunny manner, she serves the material in style...The cast of precocious kids show a level of poise and stage presence beyond their years. Led by Annie herself (Issie Swickle), the girls, Lilly Mae Stewart, Adia Dant, Isabel Wallach, Angelina Carballo, Lillybea Ireland and Sydney Schuck, are all as talented as they are adorable."
Eagle Tribune - 12/01/14
“Swickle, a 9-year-old vocal powerhouse...The ensemble and supporting cast are strong — especially all those little orphans."
Entertainment Monthly - 11/23/14
“Optimistic and genuine, Swickle fits well into the role’s almost forty-year-old shoes, showing her ability to both lead the younger cast and keep up with the older."
T2Online - 11/21/14
“The girls are little, but gifted with competent voices."
The Chicago Beat - 11/20/14
“... the orphans are a winning group, particularly Adia Dant as brutish Pepper, Angelina Carballo as sassy July and Lilly Mae Stewart as Molly, the youngest of the gang. Werner’s Lily is hilariously adorable..."
Chicago Now - 11/20/14
“First off, the show must have a strong Annie and Issie Swickle fills the bill with her commanding voice and stage presence....The orphans were on target with the small curly haired Lilly Mae Stewart playing a fiery spirited Molly."
Huffington Post - 11/20/14
“the clear-voiced Issie Swickle finds Annie's strength and heart. Clearly the audience, including the rows of young theatergoers, bought into the orphan's rise to success story. The rest of the orphans also delight, including a scene-stealing Lilly Mae Stewart as Molly (she'll make an exceptional Annie one day)."
Sun Times - 11/19/14
“To the role that is as demanding of its little female star as “Billy Elliot” is of its little male star, Swickle brings the quality of a pre-pubescent Ethel Merman. She has a big, interesting voice, excellent diction and an unaffected spirit...It is Molly (Lilly Mae Stewart), the tiny little orphan she befriends, who easily steals every scene she’s in with her elfin spontaneity and wit. It is impossible to take your eyes off her, whether she is dancing with the somewhat older orphans, hiding in a laundry basket or playing a ventriloquist’s dummy."
Wicked Local - Abington - 11/10/14
“As the resourceful heroine who just wants to find her long-lost parents, sweet-voiced Issie Swickle imbues Annie with winning warmth and believability. She is especially affecting on the gentle lament, “Maybe,” which opens both acts. Swickle is ably aided by a terrific troupe of young performers – Angelina Carballo, Adia Dant, Lillybea Ireland, Sydney Shuck, Lilly Mae Stewart, and Isabel Wallach – as her fellow orphans. "
Boston Globe - 11/07/14
“A 9-year-old actress by the wonderful name of Issie Swickle plays Annie, and she’s terrific, particularly when she’s singing classics like “Tomorrow” and “Maybe.” Her bell-clear voice rings out every little emotional turn in the lyrics...In the show’s long history, Miss Hannigan’s bunk beds have hosted a few future stars. If you go, keep your eye on 9-year-old Lilly Mae Stewart, who plays the littlest orphan, Molly, with thermonuclear cuteness. She tumbles into a laundry cart like a slapstick veteran, but draws the eye just standing there. At the least, she’ll be playing Annie somewhere in a year or two. "
Mom's Favorite Stuff - 11/07/14
“Issie Swickle (Annie) and Lynn Andrews (Miss Hannigan) were standouts, but the entire cast was fabulous."
Theatre Mirror - 11/07/14
“The canine co-star interacts with 9-year-old star, Issie Swickle, of Davie, Fla., as though they belong together. Making her tour debut, Issie is a talented little girl with a big voice, an inspiration as Annie. She’s a force to watch for in the future. So’s plucky scene stealer Lilly Mae Steward, also making her national tour debut as little orphan, Molly. She dances, tumbles, sings, and draws sympathy and laughter like a seasoned performer."
The LFB - 11/06/14
“9 year-old Issie Swickle who plays Annie was simply a delight to watch. She seemed comfortable in her role and had an infectious and energetic personality. She performed her musical numbers with ease and confidence.
The cast of orphans were talented and did an amazing job especially Lilly Mae Stewart as Molly. I don’t think she could have been any cuter!"
On Boston Stages - 10/30/14
“Issie Swickle has all the qualities you’d want in an Annie — brimming with confidence and charisma, and a voice that might reach the last row of the cavernous Wang even without a microphone.
She’s in sync with whomever she’s acting with, be it the other orphans — Lily Mae Stewart, Adia Dant, Isabel Wallach, Angelina Carballo, Lillybea Ireland, and Sydney Shuck — Miss Hannigan (Lynn Andrews), the odious caretaker of the orphanage, Daddy Warbucks (Gilgamesh Taggett) or President Franklin Roosevelt (Allan Baker)."
PGH Collective - 10/30/14
“Issie Swickle as Annie exuded a powerhouse of talent, capturing the audience with her delicately powerful voice and sharp-witted humor. It was a joy to watch her control the stage. Her blinding sense of optimism and faint shadow of wonder, seemingly crippled by her deplorable conditions, shows us the meaning of walking through fire with a smile."
Triblive - 10/29/14
“Issie Swickle's Annie is the warm and caring but resilient survivor we want our daughters and granddaughters to be...Annie and her six fellow orphans hit all the expected notes, musically and emotionally."
Edge Miami - 10/09/14
“In the title role, native Floridian Issie Swickle does a great job. While her voice is not as rich as that of Andrea McArdle, the role's creator, it is a fine voice that rings out loud, clear and consistently on pitch. She has the look and the character down pat and she charms the audience from the moment she steps onto the stage."
Florida Theater On Stage - 10/08/14
“The second reason to see this Annie is Annie. Savor the national bow of Davie resident Issie Swickle as she nails the title role with the polish and chops of someone a lot older than her nine years
Now here’s a surprise: She can belt out a song with best of them and she has performer’s pizzazz without self-consciously mugging for applause. But Swickle’s not some blinding strobe light pulling focus from everyone else like such forces of nature as the original Annie, Andrea McArdle. She’s not a dynamo (although she reportedly has that quality), she’s not a mini-Merman (although she reportedly has that ability). She actually acts the part, not performs it – which is probably why Charnin chose her over about 500 other applicants. It’s especially evident in the non-belt numbers such as the wistful opener “Maybe.”
Swickle inhabits a street savvy, scrappy survivor who has spent her entire childhood in a soul-crushing orphanage in the depth of the Depression. So when she sings out loud and strong about the sun coming out tomorrow, this Annie knows whereof she speaks.
Yes, she’s adorable, winsome and charming, but neither she nor the show is a two-dimensional cartoon character. When she makes her second act entrance in the red ringlets and jumper, high-kicking down a curving stairway in the Warbucks mansion, the beams emanating from her face seem genuine even as they are pure Broadway fantasy. To paraphrase the old pop standard, you’re gonna hear from her.
Of course, the moppets are simultaneously appealing and might pick your pocket if you gave them a chance: Adia Dant, Isabel Wallach, Lillybea Ireland, Sydney Shuck, the impossibly cute Lilly Mae Stewart as Molly, and Miamian Angelina Carballo."
Edit International - 10/08/14
“There are seven children in the orphanage and, having been a father and seeing countless amateur performances with children making childish mistakes on stage it was astounding to see this young group performing perfectly with professional confidence."
SouthFlorida.com - 10/08/14
“And for us South Floridians, there is the added thrill of watching one of our own, Davie’s Issie Swickle, play Annie with a relaxed confidence."
SFL Insider - 10/07/14
“The lead role of Annie was played by Issie Swickle, a Davie resident, who was making her national tour debut. Without the slightest bit of jitters, she was on point all night. The thing that I typically find with younger performers is that they don’t provide all the physical antics that should be aligned with their performance, yet Swickle did so in rare form. She along with her orphanage friends really made it difficult to not smile throughout the show, especially during their masterfully choreographed performance of a Hard Knock Life."