Perhaps you’ve heard of it
The classic Rogers and Hammerstein Broadway musical of 1964 that begat the stupendously popular Julie Andrews film of 1965 and forever after, is now in the capable hands of director Lucy Hoblyn and the Knowlton Players.
Rehearsals are ongoing at the United Church for a run at the Knowlton Theatre in May. This production with a cast and crew of 40, including 10 children; full costume; many singing roles; a customized score; and a single set that must sub for the Von Trapp fam- ily’s life, and flight from Austria with the Nazis in hot pursuit- is at the very least ambitious and potentially fraught with disaster.
Naturally, it is a labour of love.
“I first saw the play in England at the age of 8 and was immediately and forever obsessed,” says Hoblyn from Brome Lake Books, the literary hub she owns with Danny McCauley, her husband and the play’s set designer.
“I always wanted to stage it but never found the perfect cast. This year, we hit the sweet spot. We have really talented children and great leads in Genevieve Lapensée and Rob Ossington. The hardest part so far has been narrowing the kids down. We had 25 auditions from all over the townships. And all were incredible singers.”
The production is inspired by a version Hoblyn saw in Montreal last Christmas. “Everyone knows and expects the movie version. But we are following the Broadway script.”
“There are no changes to the story or music but to the staging,” she is quick to add, fearful of frightening the faithful, and ever aware of the venue’s limitations.
“This is community theatre and it is always a challenge. But when it works, there is an incredible sense of accomplishment.”
May 5, 6, 10, 11, 12, 13 at 7 p.m. and May 7, 14 at 2 p.m. Tickets on sale April 7: adults $22. children under 12 years $15 Theatre Lac-Brome, knowltonplayers.ca or 450-915-0562.