SALEM, N.Y. >> Director Tim Nelson and his adult acting troupe from The Rose Center Theater in Westminster, Calif., return to Fort Salem Theater for their annual summer outing the weekend of June 24-26 with Rodgers and Hammerstein's classic musical, "The Sound of Music." Once a year the group fills the Salem stage with the most popular musicals in the literature, including past productions of "Carousel," "Man of La Mancha," "Phantom," and "The Secret Garden."
The Sound of Music is based on the memoir of Maria von Trapp, The Story of the Trapp Family Singers. Set in Austria on the eve of the Anschluss in 1938, the musical tells the story of Maria, who takes a job as governess to a large family while she struggles with her decision to become a nun. She falls in love with the children, and eventually their widowed father, Captain von Trapp. He is ordered to accept a commission in the German navy, but he opposes the Nazis. He and Maria decide on a plan to flee Austria with the children. Many songs from the musical have become standards, such as "Edelweiss," "My Favorite Things," "Climb Ev'ry Mountain," "Do-Re-Mi," and the title song "The Sound of Music."
The original Broadway production, starring Mary Martin and Theodore Bikel, opened on Nov. 16, 1959. It won five Tony Awards, including Best Musical, out of nine nominations. The show has enjoyed numerous productions and revivals since then. It was adapted as a 1965 film musical starring Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer, which won five Academy Awards. The Sound of Music was the last musical written by Rodgers and Hammerstein; Oscar Hammerstein died of cancer nine months after the Broadway premiere.
In addition to the California actors, Nelson, who also works at Albany's Park Playhouse, has assembled a cast of some of the region's most accomplished young actors, including Ariana Papaleo and George Franklin.
The Sound of Music plays Friday and Saturday, June 24-25 at 8 p.m., and Sunday, June 26, at 2 p.m. Discounted tickets are available for seniors and young people twelve and under. More information is available on the theater's website (fortsalemtheater.com) or by calling the theater at (518) 854-9200.