PORTSMOUTH — Actress Sally Struthers broke her leg during the snowstorms last week and has dropped out of the production of “Annie” at The Music Hall in Portsmouth.
The 72-year-old television, film and stage star was back on the Seacoast to reprise her role as Miss Hannigan, the villainous director of a New York orphanage where the character Annie held out hope for a sun-filled tomorrow.
Officials at the Ogunquit Playhouse in Maine, which was staging the show in Portsmouth, released the news on Friday, saying Struthers is recovering from surgery. She fell on an ice-covered walkway at an undisclosed location.
“Our dear Sally will need to step out of ‘Annie’ for the rest of the run to get herself back on her feet. But she will be nearby — so don’t be surprised if you see her sneak in to watch the show,” Executive Artistic Director Bradford Kenney said in a statement.
Kenney said Ruth Gottschall, the Broadway actress who delighted Ogunquit audiences this summer as the character Helen Hubbard in Agatha Christie’s “Murder on the Orient Express,” will be playing the role of Miss Hannigan for the rest of the run.
Gottschall has performed in “Mary Poppins,” “The Music Man,” and “Cabaret” on Broadway, according to the statement.
Last month, Struthers spoke with NHWeekend via email during rehearsals for “Annie.”
At the time, Struthers said that besides having her health, one of her biggest blessings was having the chance to be in two shows for the Ogunquit Playhouse this year. In July, Struthers was in the company’s production of “42nd Street.”
“Annie” will run through Dec. 22 at The Music Hall on Chestnut Street in Portsmouth. For ticket information, visit www.themusichall.org, or call 603-436-2400.