The Sound of Music _ A Must See For The Whole Family

Published: Wednesday, June 26, 2013 7:00 am By: Sue Ann Witt Source: Rising Publications

The Sound of Music tells the story of Maria Von Trapp, a young woman who aspires to become a nun but whose spirit makes it obvious to her superiors that the religious life is not for her. She is sent to the home of Captain von Trapp to become governess to his seven children. Since the loss of his wife, the Captain wants no music in his house, demands strict obedience from children and staff and doesn’t seem to really know his children. Their pranks and mischief have caused previous governesses to leave but, little by little, Maria and the children become friends through their mutual love of music. Maria captures the heart of Captain von Trapp, much to the delight of the children but their happiness is threatened by the occupation ofAustria.

Most of us know the story of the von Trapp family, their escape from Nazi occupied Austria, through Switzerland to Italy, then to New York and ultimately to beautiful Vermont, so reminiscent of their beloved Austria. Maria von Trapp documented her life in her autobiography ‘The Story of the Trapp Family Singers’, and The Sound of Music is based on her memoirs.

The Rogers and Hammerstein score is timeless and includes “My Favorite Things,” “Maria,”  “Do-Re-Mi,”, “Climb Ev’ry Mountain,” “The Sound of Music,” and the beautiful, soulful “Edelweiss.”

The cast for this show at WBT makes it easy to put aside memories of the original Broadway show and the movie. Aubrey Sinn is wonderfully cast as quirky Maria; Matthew Shepard perfectly portrays a demanding military officer in need of someone to soften his heart. Jamison Stern brings humor but loyal friendship as Max; Michelle Dawson is the uppity Elsa who wants the Captain to marry her and shows her jealousy of Maria every chance she gets. Molly Emerson is Leisl, the oldest of the children and Cameron Bartell is Rolf, the young man Leisl has a crush on who espouses the philosophy of the Nazi Party. Melinda Tanner is Frau Schmidt, Bruce Rebold is Franz and Duane McDevitt is Herr Zeller and all are excellent in their roles.

The nyoungsters who portray the seven von Trapp children are among the most talented group of young boys and girls one can find on any stage, and the ensemble cast is outstanding. As wonderful as all the performers are, I must single out Karen Murphy as Mother Abbess. While her character portrayal is what one would expect from the head of a convent, it’s her delivery in particular of “Climb Ev’ry Mountain” that brought down the house. She has one of the most powerful, beautiful and expressive voices to be found in any theater today, and I still mhave goose bumps from her golden voice.

Thisis one show that should be seen at WBT as often as possible, with one of the best casts to be seen anywhere.

Tickets for the show, which runs through August 11, can be obtain by callingm914-592-2222 or online at
WBT is located at 1 Broadway Plaza,Elmsford,NY10523.