The Sound of Music – April 2015

Producer/Director/Choreographer: Sheryl Haydock-Howorth
Musical Director: Ann Sleigh

The Cast

Maria Rainer, a Postulant at Nonnberg Abbey – Charlotte Platt
The Mother Abbess – Joyce Walker
Sister Berthe, Mistress of Novices – Lorna Hunton
Sister Margaretta, Mistress of Postulants – Jenny Hall
Sister Sophia – Sue Dodd
Captain Georg von Trapp – Rob Earl
Franz, the butler – Gareth Roberts
Frau Schmidt, the housekeeper – Mary Bolide
Liesl, age 16 – Annabelle Gater
Friedrich, age 14 – Jaden Rowland
Louisa, age 13 – Hannah Horsley
Kurt, age 10 – Wilfred Dight
Brigitta, age 9 – Ellie Horsley
Marta, age 7 – Gladys Llewellyn
Gretl, the youngest – Lilah Coles
Rolf Gruber, age 17 – Sean Clark-Wilkinson
Elsa Schraeder – Linda Race
Max Detweiler – Kevin Whitfield
Herr Zeller – Tom Essex
Baron Elberfeld – Nick Horsley
A new Postulant – Ellie Dodd
Admiral von Schreiber – Tony Hoy

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

(NODA Review by Peter Jackson)

The Sound of MusicTHE SOUND OF MUSIC

This show is one of the classics, and I was always of the opinion it wouldn’t sit easy on the stage but having seen it now many times I am convinced it does. A show where the ladies ensemble have to come into their own right from the off as they assemble for prayers in the abbey, and how they did, the work put in by the Musical Director to accomplish such a high standard of coral singing was excellent, the harmonies landed on the ear beautifully a huge congratulation to you all, what a start to a show.

The orchestration throughout the show, albeit by a combo was excellent. The set was stunning and worked well by all the cast especially the Von Trap children. Costumes were sublime and well fitted, I always say get the right costumes get the best from a comfortable cast.

The entrance of Maria (Charlotte Platt) was breathtaking, breezing onto the stage to gasps from the audience looking every inch the part with the most beautiful voice, a very demanding role both in character and emotions, carried off by an extremely accomplished actor huge congratulations.

The Mother Abbess (Joyce Walker) there was a richness of warmth and sincerity with the portrayal of this role total believability and kindness, delivery of diction and of the Climb Every Mountain number suited your voice so well, very much appreciated by a captive audience well done.

The endearing sisters Berthe, Margaretta, and Sophia (Lorna Hunton, Jennifer Hall, Susan Dodd) gave a tremendous performance both with the individuality of the characters and also the singing clarity of harmonies yet again stunning well done. Captain Von Trap (Rob Earl) a commanding performance in every sense of the word, and yet an extremely warm side too showing good characterisation throughout, you worked hard with your singing but don’t forget to live the song as well good performance. Max Detweiller (Kevin Whitfield) well suited for this role, I liked the cheeky chappie approach to this part, leaning on your friendship with the Captain to achieve your goals, well matched against Elsa (Linda Race) who with the most beautiful voice eased her way into the affections of the Captain alas a relationship not to be, nevertheless a role carried off with stunning dignity very good performance.

Rolf Gruber and Liesl (Sean Clark – Wilkinson and Annabelle – Ruth Gater) gave what I consider to be the best matched couple I’ve seen in many a year, young lovers so much in love torn apart by war, singing and dancing through their numbers so easily very convincing well done.

Talk about saving the best until last my goodness the Von Trap children gave the most outstanding performance so united as a family you just wanted to take them home, all individually characterised, singing and dancing and generally being so loveable children. This only becomes from a Director of immense talent and wealth of experience to achieve such a high standard, well done

The Von Trap children, Friedrich (Jaden Rowland) Louisa (Hannah Horsley) Kurt (Wilf Dight) Brigitta (Ellie Horsley) Marta (Gladys Llewellyn) Gretl (Lilah Coles) my sincere congratulations to each and everyone of you.

Overall an excellent show well done  Many thanks for the hospitality shown to me on my visit.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

(The Crewe News Review by Stephanie Heath)

CAMS present “The Sound of Music”

The curtain has gone up on the Crewe Amateur Musicals Society production of The Sound of Music at the Lyceum Theatre in Crewe this week.

For those of you not familiar with the Sound of Music, it is based on the true story of the Von Trapp Family and is set amidst the horrors of World War II. It tells the tale of Maria Rainer who is selected by the Mother Abbess to serve as the children’s’ governess. Maria transforms the Von Trapp family home from a place of rules and regulations, to one filled with joy, laughter and music. Maria wins the hearts of the children and their widower father, Captain Georg Von Trapp. The story goes on to tell how the family manage to flee from Nazi occupied Austria, over the hills to the safety of Switzerland.

CAMS members have rehearsed their hearts out over the previous several months to bring this polished production to the Lyceum Theatre stage – and it shows! The whole show is a credit to the production team and every single cast member involved.

Featuring many well-known songs such as ‘Climb Every Mountain’, ‘My Favourite Things’, ‘Do-Re-Mi’ and of course the title ‘The Sound of Music’, this show will have you tapping your foot or singing along in no time!

Charlotte Platt portrays a wonderful Maria. With a bucketful of acting ability and sublime vocals that in my humble opinion rival the great Julie Andrews, you can’t help but fall in love with Maria from her first appearance in the Abbey with the Mother Abbess (Joyce Walker). Joyce is perfectly cast in her role and produces some powerful, and spellbinding, vocal performances that will make the hairs on your neck stand to attention, while bringing a tear to your eye with the underlying emotions of it all!

Robert Earl plays Captain Georg Von Trapp with confidence & charisma. The Captain is a man who has suffered great tragedy in his past and tries to compensate with discipline and order, especially where his children and staff are concerned. With Maria in his life he learns to live and appreciate what he has again.

For me, the shining stars of the show are the Von Trapp Children – Annabelle Gater (Liesl), Jaden Rowland (Frederich), Hannah Horsley (Louisa), Wilf Dight (Kurt), Ellie Horsley (Brigitta), Gladys Llewellyn (Marta) and Lilah Coles (Gretl) are nothing short of fantastic. The interaction, acting, vocals and stage presence from each and every one of them is flawless. When you add Maria to the mix, a whole new level of brilliance is achieved.

Linda Race (Elsa Schraeder) and Kevin Whitfield (Max Detweiler) play their respective parts exceptionally well and the entire supporting cast make this an excellent show all round.