The Sound of Music
The Sound of Music was the second musical Longford on Stage performed.
Based in the Austrian town of Salzburg, the musical follows the life of a convent novice, Maria. As a result of being unhappy in the convent, she is sent to be a governess to the seven children of Captain Georg Ritter von Trapp, a former captain in the Austro-Hungarian Navy who was widowed some time before. Captain von Trapp is very pro Austria and anti Nazi Germany. The children are initially unhappy having a governess, but after a while become to like and trust her. During this period, she finds herself falling in love with the captain. Unfortunately, he is engaged to Baroness Elsa Schraeder.
Eventually Maria marries the Captain and they have to escape to Switzerland to escape the Third Reich.
Production NotesWell folks, it seems an age since the last production of Joseph hit the stage and I'm sure I'm a bit greyer following what has been around nine months of rehersals. Compared to the Sound of Music, Joseph was an absolute piece of cake. I don't think that any of us realised this when we set off with it earlier this year.
The major difference is that the Sound of Music is around 75% dialogue wheras Joseph was all singing, and most of it by carol! Learning pages of dialogue is a bit tough for the old grey matter but I've been absolutly amazed at the leaning capacity of those with major parts who seem to have acomplished it without too much difficulty. I do know however that a lot of hard work must have been done behind the scenes to make it seem so effortless. I admire them all!!
Not only has the production been more testing for the actors, it has been infinitley more testing for the wardrobe dept. Our wardrobe mistress Lynne Porter has probably had more sleepless nights than me. Betty Wilshee has been fantastic in supporting Lynne and thanks also go to Jill Benn, Sue Tomlinson and Pam Lovick for their help over recent weeks. Believe me, 6 nuns outfits, 5 changes of costume for 7 Von Trapp children (35), several ball gowns, bride and bridesmaid's dresses, 3 servants outfits, 3 German outfits together with those for the Captain, Mariam Elsa and Max, adds up to an awful lot of hours at the sewing machine. Of course, this doesn't include stage props and curtains which all had to be individually made.
Our Musical Director William has also had his work cut out with what is an infinitely more difficult score to learn and we thank him for his effort and patience with us all.
In addition to the costumes, there are a lot of props which needed considerable time and effort to produce. Andrew Stringer has again played a huge part in producing our sound, sfx and lighting. Hours of work have gone into upgrading our stage facilites for this and future productions.In addition, he has also repaired the stage curtains which have not worked totally correctly for as long as I can remember. Now the curtain operator doesn't need to wear gloves to avoid blisters!
Norman Stringer too has given considerable time for so many jobs around the stage I have lost count. Never one to do a shoddy job, I think we are probably to only stage to have solid English Oak habdrails and curtain winding gear supports!
Our stage management for this show is an absolute nightmare and you'll hopefully see what I mean every time the curtains open. For this operation we have a team of five people. My thanks to Betty, Pam, Sarah, Alex and Gill for not complaining about the mountain of changes I asked them to do.
Even more scenery this time and our thanks go to Gill and Gemma for their superb artistry with brush and tissue paper (trade secrets have been noted!)
Show lighting has been arranged by James Porter who also is doubling as the curtain operator. He has so many buttons to push and switches to use now thansk to Andrew that I'm not sure how he does it!
Lastly our thanks go to the kitchen cre for the refreshments.
I would also like to add my thanks to the cast and crew for their enthusiasm over the months. It makes all the work and effort worthwhile.
Enjoy the Show! Steve Benn, Director.
|The cast for this production was:-|
|Maria Rainer||Sophie Benn|
|Captain von Trapp||James Randle|
|Elsa Schraeder||Jill Copper|
|Maxamillion Detweiler||Steve Benn|
|Franz & Herr Zeller||Stuart Porter|
|Frau Schmidt||Charlene Randle|
|Mother Abbess||Carol McDougall|
|Liesl von Trapp||Gemma Wood|
|Freidrich von Trapp||Dale Jefford|
|Louisa von Trapp||Claire Wood|
|Kurt von Trapp & Rolf||Adam Lilley|
|Briggita von Trapp||Charlotte Porter|
|Marta von Trapp & Nun||Cara Mullan|
|Gretel von Trapp||Megan Mullan|
|Sister Sophia & Ursula||Sarah Smith|
|Sister Bertha||Barbara Porter|
|Sister Margereta||Audrey Benn|
|Colonel von Schreiber||Paul Smith|
|Nun & Postulant||Emma Smith|
|The Backstage crew were:-|
|Wardrobe Mistress||Lynn Porter|
|Stage Crew & Special award winner!||Sarah Benn|
|Lighting & Sound||Andrew Stringer|
|Stage Crew||Betty Willshee|
|Stage Crew||Pam Lovick|
|Stage Crew & Scene Painting||Alex Smelt|
|Stage Crew & Scene Painting||Gill Smelt|
|Stage Crew||John Tomlinson|
Pictures from the Longford on Stage production of The Sound of Music:-
(Click a picture to see a larger version).