THE SOUND OF MUSIC presented by The Carnegie and Kentucky Symphony Orchestra through Jan. 26.
Like many people, I have fond memories of the annual broadcast of the classic movie around the holidays. Its popularity results in it being often performed on local stages, many times with mixed results. After having seen Marie Osmond and Barry (Greg Brady) Williams perform the leads, I found myself burned out for several years.
Then, something wonderful happened last Friday night at The Carnegie. I fell in love with THE SOUND OF MUSIC again.
One of the best parts of this production is the sound. Vocally, the cast is extremely strong and they are beautifully accompanied by the Kentucky Symphony Orchestra under the baton of James. R. Cassidy. Thanks to an excellent sound design by Kevin Semancik, assisted by A. J. Bierschwal, you can hear nearly every note and word.
Director Brian Robertson has assembled an excellent cast, including the children, and the show flows well with clever staging that uses the entire set well (designed by Angelina Vyushkova). Abigail Paschke shines as Maria Rainer. Paschke and Jared Joplin as Captain George von Trapp make a charismatic pair.
The scene featuring the Captain’s reaction to hearing his children sing for the first time was very well done and it was at this point I realized how vested I had become in the production.
Other standouts include Kathryn Miller as eldest daughter Liesl and Maria Ventura as the Mother Abbess who closes both acts with a powerful and moving “Climb Ev’ry Mountain.” I also enjoyed the strong character work of Kemper Florin as Elsa Schraeder and Mike Hall as Max Detweiler.
The costumes worked well, although the fabric of the children’s uniforms was a bit stiff, making sitting awkward for the older girls. Regarding the set, the “floating frames” would have worked better for me, if they had been placed closer to the scrim. Depending on where you sat in the audience, the projected images were partially blocked by the frames.
Overall a well-done and truly enjoyable production. For me, the best collaboration between The Carnegie and The Kentucky Symphony Orchestra yet.
My rating: 4.25 out of 5
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