Weekend Showcase: Cross Community Players’ “The Diary of Anne Frank”
The Cross Community Players are performing one of the most powerful stories to come out of World War II. The theater group is putting on “The Diary of Anne Frank” this weekend at Cross Winds United Methodist Church in Maple Grove.
“All People are Good at Heart.”
“It’s a tight little drama that presents a very positive story in a way,” says Director Dann Peterson. “One of Anne’s most famous quotes is probably that in the end she still believes that all people are good at heart.”
The vivacious Olivia Denniger plays Anne Frank.
“She’s very spunky and very energetic, which I relate to,” said Denninger. “I have a lot of energy. I’m very outgoing, so it was easier than a lot of roles that I’ve had to kind of relate to her in that way.”
The play brings to life the story of Anne’s family hiding from the Nazis during World War II. The Frank family hid with other Jewish people for two years in Amsterdam.
Brad Vanasse, who plays Anne’s father Otto, has three daughters of his own in real life.
“It’s also a story to me about a girl who’s coming of age,” said Vanasse. “I think people resonate with that.”
A serious production
The cast and crew of Cross Community Players put quite a bit of study and preparation into the show.
“A lot of background work went into this we had to dig up a lot of history,” said Christopher Zanetti, who played Mr. Dussel. “We brought in a dramaturge, which is a person to give us the history of the show. And there’s a lot of rituals, Hebrew rituals, that are put into the show. And we wanted to make sure that we did everything correct.”
The show has its levity, but all within a very serious and tense construct.
The Diary of Anne Frank wraps up its run this weekend with shows Friday and Saturday at 7:30 and Sunday at 2;30. You can find more information at the Cross Community Players website.