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Review: ‘The Sound of Music’s’ strong vocals captivated Centennial Hall’s audience on opening night

Still+from+a+performance+of+the+Sound+of+Music.
Courtesy Matthew Murphy
Still from a performance of the Sound of Music.

The hills are alive with the sound of music and so was the audience during the opening night of Broadway in Tucson’s production of “The Sound of Music.”

The night of the premier had a full house waiting for the show to begin at Centennial Hall. As the lights went dark, a single nun, named the Mother Abbess, played by Melody Betts, appeared on stage and sang “The Nonnberg Abbey” and later the Nuns of the Nonnberg Abbey joined the Mother Abbess to help her sing the song.

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As the play progressed the audience learned that Maria, the main character, played by Anna Mintzer (the understudy), does not follow the rules of the Nonnberg Abbey and gets temporarily kicked out as the Mother Abbess wants Maria to find a lifestyle more suited for her. Maria then becomes the governess of rich Captain Georg von Trapp, played by Ben Davis, and instantly gains his seven children’s love and affection as she teaches them to sing.

The play takes place during the time of Nazi Germany and has the family in a panic to decide to conform to Hitler’s Third Reich or leave the country. In the final scene the family made this difficult decision with a clever exit.

The show had an impeccable set with movable pieces that gyrated with actors as they walked around the stage.

“I loved all the different stage designs,” said audience member Mitchell Crowley. “It was really cool to see it transition from scene to scene. I liked how they didn’t darken the stage as the set changed.”

The seamless transitions allowed audience members to feel apart of the show and not hidden in the dark. A few memorable sets featured in the show had the audience in awe.

One of these sets, the mansion of Captain Georg von Trapp, showcased large windows looking out to the mountains, a huge crystal chandelier and a large staircase. Another beautiful set, the church of the Nonnberg Abbey sisters, had tall ceilings, a stain glass window and long corridors. One of the last sets displayed five huge Nazi flags hung behind Captain Georg von Trapp’s family during a music festival, which set a haunting mood over the audience as they all looked back on the time of Hitler’s rule.

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The cast had a truly great performance and each actor had immense vocal abilities. Maria stole the show with her soft yet powerful voice, and was very soothing to listen to.

“Maria was great,” said audience member Nicholas Heldt. “She really brought the show to life and had an amazing voice.”

The Mother Abbess, who had a more soulful voice, held another actress with a strong vocal presence. When the family all came together to sing, they performed dance routines that emphasized the words of the songs.

“I enjoyed watching the seven children sing and dance with Maria,” said audience member Kyle De John. “It was cool how Maria got the kids to like her through music.”

Don’t miss out on seeing “The Sound of Music,” which takes place at Centennial Hall until Dec. 4. Tickets available for purchased online or at the door.


Follow Victoria Hudson on Twitter.


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