Still alive with the sound of music
The Von Trapp Children Concert
– When: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 7
– Where: Summit Middle School, Frisco
– Tickets: (970) 453-9142
BRECKENRIDGE – If you are more than 40 years old, you more than likely remember the Rogers and Hammerstein musical bonanza, “The Sound of Music.”
If are younger, chances are good the music from that long running play and award-winning film played a part in your growing up – think songs such as “Do Re Mi” and “Edelweiss.”
The subject of that musical is, of course, the von Trapp family. Although its rich musical heritage and heroic story is legendary, it is still very much alive today.
On Friday, Nov. 7, the Breckenridge Music Festival presents the great-grandchildren of George Ritter von Trapp at the Summit Middle School. Christopher Plummer originally played von Trapp in the 1965 film “The Sound of Music.”
Von Trapp’s great-grandchildren, Sofia, 14; Melanie, 12; Amanda, 11; and Justin, 8, have inherited the famous family’s love of song.
Their mother, Annie said, “They just love to sing. Growing up they’d always sing in the car.”
Their grandparents – the famous von Trapp children portrayed in the film – taught them songs they eventually recorded to create a highly successful CD.
Sofia – the eldest and spokesperson for her siblings – is effusive about her love of singing and traveling,
“I love staying involved, learning the new songs, learning about sound systems, meeting people I’d never have the chance to meet back home (in Kalispell, Mont.).”
The children began performing together in 1997 at the family’s renowned lodge in Stowe, Vt., as part of a celebration of their grandparent’s 50th wedding anniversary.
Steeped in tradition – and dressed in some of the same clothing originally worn by their famous family – the youngsters have since found their performances attended by people of all ages.
Annie von Trapp married Stefan von Trapp after meeting him while vacationing in Vermont.
“People are always coming up to us and saying how, when they were little, their moms took them to see “Sound of Music’ and how much they enjoy our songs and the memories.”
When asked why she thinks there is so still much interest in the family’s story and why this newest generation of von Trapps is performing in sold-out venues, she was quick to respond, “People love us. There’s a connection to family … for others who have sought a chance for a better life.”
The wealthy Austrian von Trapp family depicted in the film escaped the Nazi tyranny by hiking over the Alps into Italy, carrying with them whatever they could fit in their backpacks.
To help the family survive, great-grandmother Maria von Trapp capitalized on the children’s natural ability and joy for singing. First performing at weddings and other gatherings, then later in concert halls throughout Europe and eventually the United States, they ultimately settled in Vermont, where the direct descendants still live today.
For Annie von Trapp, the Summit County performance is a homecoming of sorts. Growing up in Omaha, Neb., she used to come to Breckenridge to ski with her family.
The show, Friday, Nov. 7, starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults and $12 for children and may be purchased by calling (970) 453-9142. Tickets may also be purchased at the door, if available. But be forewarned: Most of the children’s performances sell out.
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