If you love The Sound of Music, go to the Westchester Broadway Theatre.

Published: Monday, July 1, 2013 7:00 am By: Eugene Paul
If you love The Sound of Music, go to the Westchester Broadway Theatre. It’s easy, easy travel, easy parking, easy dinner and a GOOD show. If you never loved The Sound of Music, go to the Westchester Broadway Theatre and this time, fall in love. Everybody loves the music, that’s not the problem; if there is a problem it’s a question of ick. Getting down to cases, the show is about the Trapp Family of Singers, it’s about Maria Von Trapp and how she went from nun postulant to baroness at the drop of a snood. But it is also very much about Georg von Trapp, the steely baron, and the better the actor in the performance of the uptight baron as he melts into a human being and falls in love with an enchanting young would-be nun nursemaid to his seven children, teaching them not to be automatons as papa has done, well, the better the show, wouldn’t you think? How’s your ick tolerance?

Be happy: this time, he’s the best. Matthew Shepard as Captain Georg Von Trapp pours love, soul and humanity you have never seen before in his love scene with Maria and actually causes everyone in the audience to “Aaah” and even to gulp. And it’s not ick. Suddenly, lovely young Aubrey Sinn, as Maria, becomes indeed Maria, not just a young actress trying to do everything exactly right. Very, very satisfying.

The Sound of Music is, as you and everyone else know, the story of not only how the Trapp Family Singers came into being but also of their narrow escape from the Nazis once Austria was taken over by Hitler’s Germany. Maria Von Trapp’s memoir of all this was spun into a Broadway musical in 1959 with a book by the top book makers in town, Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse, and music and lyrics by those princes of the musical theater, Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II. The world’s been singing their score ever since. The hills are, indeed, alive with “The Sound of Music,” and the songs are, indeed, on everyone’s list of “My Favorite Things.” On Broadway, the show ran for 1,443 performances. In London, it ran for 2,385 performances. It is in the permanent repertoire of the Vienna State Opera. There have been fifteen prime revivals. The film which followed in 1965 is still running. Strong. Billions strong. Which ought to inspire every new production with confidence. The show’s got a built in audience, in fact, generations of built in audiences. It’s been a hit, it is a hit, it is going to be a hit again. Should