The Sound of Music

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What's the story of The Sound of Music

The final collaboration between Richard Rodgers & Oscar Hammerstein II, The Sound of Music, has become a play beloved around the world. Based on the true story of the Von Trapp Family Singers, this play captures a personal tale of growth and hope amidst the horrors of World War II. The Sound of Music tells the tale of young postulant Maria Rainer, whose free spirit has trouble fitting into the rules and regulations of Nonnberg Abbey. Commissioned by the Mother Abbess to serve as the governess for seven motherless children, Maria transforms the Von Trapp family home from a place of dour rules and regulations to one filled with joy, with laughter, and with music. In the process, Maria wins the hearts of all seven children--and their widower father, Captain Von Trapp. With the Mother Abbess’ blessing, and to the children’s delight, Maria follows her heart, and Maria and the Captain marry. Upon returning home from their honeymoon, Maria and the Captain learn that their beloved Austria has been taken over by the Nazis, and the retired Captain is asked to report for immediate service in the Nazi Navy. When the Nazis show up at their door to take Captain Von Trapp away, it is a family singing engagement (wily navigated by their friend Max) that buys the family time to make their narrow escape. Their Austrian convictions compel Maria, the Captain, and the children to flee over the mountains of Switzerland to safety, taking the words of the Mother Abbess to heart: “Climb Every Mountain… till you find your dream.”

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The Sound of Music


LEAD ADULT CHARACTERS:
Maria Rainer (musical theatre mix/soprano, dance, 20-35)
A postulant at Nonnberg Abbey – young, free spirited, warm, gentle and kind with much determination.

Captain Georg von Trapp (baritone, moves well, 35-45)
A retired Austrian naval captain. Polished, yet very military in the way he runs his life to repress his sadness over the death of his wife; underneath, he is warm, understanding, and determined.

Max Detweiller (tenor/baritone, moves well, 30+)
Charming and vital; a man of sophistication who enjoys the good life; true and loyal friend to the von Trapp family.

Elsa Schrader (mezzo soprano, moves well, 35-45)
A baroness of taste and elegance, sophisticated, dignified and mature.

Mother Abbess (legit soprano, wide vocal range, 40+, very strong actress)
Motherly, understanding, strong and authoritative, but kind.

FEATURED CHARACTERS:
Sister Berthe (alto, moves well)
Mistress of Novices, prudish, straight laced with a quick tongue, she is less tolerant than other nuns.

Sister Margaretta (mezzo, moves well)
Mistress of Postulants, very kind, understanding and concerned.

Sister Sophia (soprano, moves well)
Neither demanding nor critical, sticks with the rules.

Franz (non-singing, 30+)
The von Trapp butler, rather formal but not without spirit, he is very German and loyal to the Fascist cause.

Frau Schmidt (non-singing, 30+)
The housekeeper, stoic, very little personality; she does her job efficiently but without affection. Strong and somewhat dominating.

Herr Zeller (non-singing, 40+)
Stern and unsmiling, a typical Nazi official whose primary concern is to see that everyone toes the line.

Rolf Gruber (low tenor, dance, 17)
Suitor to Liesl, telegram delivery boy, later Nazi soldier. A very pleasant young man, somewhat aggressive but in a gentle way.

LEAD CHILDREN’S ROLES:
All children, apart from their character description must be able to be conservative with their emotions and “serious.”

Liesl von Trapp (mezzo, dance, 16)
The oldest child, blossoming into a young lady with an interest in boys. She has a maternal edge to her and cares very deeply for her younger siblings.

Friedrich von Trapp (age 14)
Tough exterior, very much trying to be “the man” of the family.

Louisa von Trapp (age 13)
Rebellious attitude.

Kurt von Trapp (age 10, falsetto)
Gentle and mischievous.

Brigitta von Trapp (age 9)
Smart, reads a lot.

Marta von Trapp (age 7)
Very sweet and gentle.

Gretl von Trapp (age 6)
Must have the cute factor.

CHORUS:
5-10 male chorus members (16-60+ years) – Nazi soldiers, neighbors, Salzburg
citizens and Georg’s friends (of naval background).
5-10 female chorus members (16-60+ years) – Salzburg citizens, new postulant, nuns, novices, postulants and contestants in the Festival Concert.