From the opening Latin hymns in the abbey to the whimsical "Do-Re-Me" of the Von Trapp children, the Academy of the New Church's production of The Sound of Music delighted.
The Sound of Music premiered on Broadway in 1959 with music and lyrics by Rogers and Hammerstein. The well-known story is based on the true tale of Maria von Trapp and the Trapp Family Singers. The musical was made into a movie in 1965 starring Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer, winning five Academy Awards. The stage version also won the Tony Award for Best Musical.
The Academy of the New Church's production was anchored by the energy and vocal talent of the entire cast. Both the leads and the ensemble brought this classic show to life, from cheerful songs like "The Lonely Goatherd" to the heartfelt "Edelweiss".
Leanna Smith delivered a charming and impressive performance as the iconic Maria. With first-rate vocals and a clear understanding of her character, Smith shined on stage. As Caption von Trapp, Alex Hyatt was equally skilled. Hyatt portrayed the strict father with adept ability. Smith and Hyatt worked well together, with natural onstage chemistry between Maria and the Captain.
The seven Von Trapp children also put forth accomplished performances. Playing all different ages, each character was well-developed and distinct. Notable among the children is the oldest, Leisl played by Savannah Smith. As Elsa Schraeder and Max Detweiler, Freya Simons and Ian McCollum added a fun, comedic element to the show. The pair brought lots of laughs to the audience.
The sets were excellent: effective and fitting without distracting from the show. They were made almost entirely by the Academy of the New Church's StageCraft Class. The stage crew moved the sets quickly and efficiently to keep the show going. Despite a few quiet moments, the sound was successful as well.