Rain Curtails Historic 'Sound of Music' Concerts | Theater | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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Rain Curtails Historic 'Sound of Music' Concerts


Published June 22, 2024 at 2:46 p.m.

Trapp Family Lodge concert meadow - COURTESY OF TRAPP FAMILY LODGE
  • Courtesy of Trapp Family Lodge
  • Trapp Family Lodge concert meadow
Rain forced three of the four outdoor performances of "The Sound of Music: In Concert" indoors this weekend, disappointing musicians and audience members eager to participate in the first-ever live productions of the score at the von Trapp family's historic home.

A break in the showers on Friday allowed the Vermont Symphony Orchestra and Lyric Theatre to perform in the Trapp Family Lodge concert meadow in Stowe that night, as planned. Thursday night's concert along with two on Saturday moved to the Flynn Main Stage in Burlington, the event's backup location.

  • Courtesy
Presenting a concert version of a Broadway musical outdoors has long been a dream of Lyric Theatre executive director Erin Evarts. "This has been an absolute joy from start to finish," Evarts said in a phone call from the Flynn lobby on Saturday afternoon. "And we aren't in the meadow for all of the shows, but there's a different kind of magic that we have when we're in a building as beautiful as the Flynn."

The historic Burlington theater seats 1,400 people, 450 fewer than the concert meadow can accommodate. "So we're sad that we can't share it with more audience members, but I can say that everybody who was here Thursday night had a wonderful time, and the magic in this space is just as strong." Those holding meadow-only tickets will receive a refund.

The concert features a 41-member Lyric cast backed by a 50-member VSO. Kerstin Anderson, a South Burlington native who portrayed Maria in a 2015 national touring production of the musical, performs and hosts.

The Sound of Music, the most successful movie musical of all time, was inspired by Georg and Maria von Trapp and their musical family, who escaped Nazi-occupied Austria in 1938 and settled in Stowe in 1942. The family has operated its Stowe lodge since 1950.
Johannes von Trapp, the youngest and only living member of the family's 10 famous children, attended the Friday night concert, along with Petra Schneebauer, Austria's ambassador to the United States, and "a slice of Vermont," Evarts said.

Sprinkles fell during intermission but many people had umbrellas "and it was a lovely night at the meadow," Evarts said.

The concert marks several milestone anniversaries: the VSO's 90th; Lyric's 50th; the 65th of The Sound of Music's Broadway debut; and the 75th of Maria von Trapp's first book, The Story of the Trapp Family Singers, the first-person account that inspired a 1956 German film, followed by the 1959 Broadway musical and the 1965 movie.

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