(WCMH) – NBC has cast 12-year-old Celina Smith to lead the upcoming holiday production of “Annie Live!” after an exhaustive nationwide search, according to a release.
The network describes the young actress as a “triple threat.” Her resume includes the role of Young Nala in a national touring company’s production of “The Lion King” and the part of Rebecca Wilson on the series “Tyler Perry’s Young Dylan.”
In a statement, Smith acknowledged those who previously took on the title role of Annie and revealed her excitement about the upcoming production.
“It’s an honor to follow in the footsteps of the talented young ladies who have played Annie before me and I can’t wait to start this journey,” Smith said.
Hailing from Atlanta, Smith will be thrust into the national spotlight as she performs, “some of musical theater’s most beloved numbers, including ‘Maybe,’ ‘Tomorrow’ and ‘It’s a Hard Knock Life,'” according to NBC.
Smith will also share the stage with an all-star cast including Taraji P. Henson as Miss Hannigan, Harry Connick Jr. as Daddy Warbucks, Nicole Scherzinger as Grace and Tituss Burgess as Rooster.
Viewers can watch the live musical on Thursday, Dec. 2 at 8 p.m. on WSAV.