Theater Review: The Sound of Music—a classic for 50 years

By Edith McCauley

Theater Critic

Rodgers and Hammerstein created this classic story of the Von Trapp family and brought to us an operetta whose beautiful music still resonates. The Fireside Theatre continues to present shows that both entertain and inspire. Sunday’s audience of seniors, families of all ages, and those whose drive to Edgerton, Wis., rewarded them with fabulous food and an afternoon of fine musical theater all found that the Klopcic family continues its tradition to the community.

Ed Flesch brilliantly directs, and his choice of cast is perfect. Opening with Cassandra Liveris’
The Sound of Music,

the extremely talented young woman, as Maria, introduces us with perfect pitch and sensitive interpretation. As a member of the Nonnberg Abbey under the care of Mother Abbess, Megan Thomas, she is still drawn to the mountainside of her childhood. The sisters of the Abbey, Rhonda Rae Busch, Kelly Hackett, Jill Ginsberg, Megan Hamaker and Laura Medford, sing some of the most stunning songs of the show. Their close harmony is pure, and their dialogue reveals the intricacies of the plot.

The seven Von Trapp children have been double cast, and those on stage last Sunday gave completely professional performances. Musical Director Patti Garwood, currently musical director/conductor at the Marriott Theatre in Lincolnshire, returns to the Fireside to make The Sound of Music the highlight of the season. Every number brings to our ears the nuances of harmony that make this classic so memorable. Lindsey Powell is Liesl, the eldest daughter of the no-nonsense Captain George Von Trapp (Gary Lindeman), the father of this brood of seven. Both play their parts well, and as the story evolves, we find the German invasion of Austria brings great change and complications to the family. It is Maria’s influence that so makes the difference in their lives.

The exceptional score moves the plot forward, and every number, so familiar to us, intensifies that feeling. The children with Maria sing
Do-Re-Mi,” their introduction to song;
My Favorite Things,

from Maria’s childhood; and of course,
So Long, Farewell

that at the conclusion of the show plays such an important part of their escape.

Our drive on Sunday through the countryside, always enjoyable, was a welcome to the beginning of fall. The food prepared by the staff was excellent, and the Sacher Torte, a Viennese classic, ended a lovely meal. The Sound of Music will entertain your family at every level. The children make it especially interesting to younger people. The show runs through Nov. 1, and details on ticket information can be had by calling 1-(800) 477-9505 or by going online at The gracious staff are most helpful. A new Christmas show opens Nov. 5. A musical adaptation of Miracle on 34th Street, it is especially appropriate for families. Do try to see these fine performances. It is well worth the trip.

From the September 9-15, 2009 issue

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