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Stage version based on the movie 
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Tony Winner
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I would like to mention that when I explained why I felt MFT worked better in the bedroom, it was because it struck me as making sense. In my posts on SOM, I would like to assess the changes between the stage and film versions, and many of the film improvements worked pretty well for the film. I can see the easier ones working equally well in the context of the stage show too, and I've never viewed the changes as having a commercial motive or two.


Sat Sep 29, 2007 2:43 am
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Tony Winner
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Yip1982 wrote:
Thank you for sharing the insights. However, will it be all right that I mentioned something about My Favourite Things?
I like it better in the thunderstorm scene, because it shows that Maria and the children can turn a bad situation into something good. If you consider that the list of songs begins with raindropos on roses, and that ties in with the thunder, lightning and rain that goes on outside the house, this song is like Maria teaching the children how to turn something negative into something positive (making the best of a bad situation). I think it's a very powerful, if intangible, thing to see during the thunderstorm scene, as compared to the loudness of "Goatherd". And I think it also works better because when the children reprise "Favourite Things" at the beginning of Act Two, they know it as a song that Maria sings to comfort herself when she is down. So, I feel like this song can reinforce this if it's sung in the bedroom scene.


I too like the way MFT was used in the movie. Besides the song itself, the way conductor Irwin Kostal managed the orchestra's sheer power, keying it to the kids' varying degrees of exuberance, contributed mightily to its success. The kids didn't do any singing in the bedroom scene, but Irwin was obviously aware of their presence, the anxiety of the 2 youngest girls, the bravado of the boys and the older girls, and Maria's trying to comfort them, aware in the back of her mind that she was going out on a limb with their father. As she went through the song, and the kids responded, Irwin built up his power progressively, peaking just before the Captain entered the bedroom - then he shut down abruptly, "on a dime". (Imagine the driver of a French TGV train trying to stop like that from 300 km/h+!) After the Captain's exit in a huff, Irwin picked up Maria's anger at the Captain's unreasonableness, her attempt to get over it, her resourcefulness in seeing the soon-to-be-replaced drapes as material for play clothes, and her increasing optimism as she closed out the interrupted song.

Irwin used much the same power management for the MFT reprise at Maria's return from the Abbey. The kids started off singing half-heartedly, at about half the normal tempo, and without orchestral backup. Irwin at first let the orchestra almost drift along aimlessly behind the kids - until Maria's voice cut across those of the kids. At that point, sensing the kids' joy, Irwin quickly recovered full tempo, and powered up as Maria and the kids closed out the song.

I also liked the reworking "Lonely Goatherd" into a puppet show: it showed off the kids' increasing confidence, the Captain's rediscovery of his cultured nature (suppressed since the kids' mother died), and his rapprochement with the kids - something both he and they wanted, much to his surprise. Again right through LG, Irwin keyed the orchestra's power to the kids' exuberance, without overpowering them - clearly a specialty of his. (Much of Irwin's work in the 1960s and 1970s was musical films that either directly or indirectly involved kids). The only time he ever let the orchestra hit anywhere near full power was the final chorus of "Do-Re-Mi". One would have to listen very closely to the orchestra while the kids are singing, or present, to pick up on all this.


Sun Sep 30, 2007 9:54 am
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Young Hoofer
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I personally think that My Favorite Things works very well in the bedroom, rather than at the Abbey between Maria and the Mother Abbess. I haven't seen it, but I know that the new London Production put The Lonely Goatherd right before the Ball, and it's a song sung by Maria and the kids. Then they used the Do-Re-Mi Reprise at the Concert. Now, I think this also works extremely well.

The film improved the stage play a great deal, but somethings that work in the movie cannot work on stage. For example, the placement of the song Do-Re-Mi. It works well in the living room on stage, but not on film I don't think. As for How Can Love Survive?, I think it would have worked in the movie, and it works well on stage. Although a good song, "No Way To Stop It" could be dropped. I've seen a production that drops it entirely. It's also better, in my opinion, that Gerog and Elsa break up because of his love for Maria, which is really what happened in real-life, than having them break-up because she supports the Nazis.


Mon Oct 01, 2007 2:39 pm
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Off-Broadway Lead
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I agree with Yip 100 percent, really. I love MFT in the bedroom.

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Tue Oct 02, 2007 2:49 pm
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degrassifan wrote:
. It's also better, in my opinion, that Gerog and Elsa break up because of his love for Maria, which is really what happened in real-life, than having them break-up because she supports the ----.


Elsa wasnt real she is based on a princess that baron Von Trapp was engaged to.

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Thu Oct 04, 2007 6:34 am
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Young Hoofer
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I know that. What I meant was that Georg broke up with Elsa because of his love for Maria, just like in real-life, when the real Georg broke up with Princess Yvonne because he had feelings for Maria. Unfortunately, the real Maria didn't feel the same way.


Thu Oct 04, 2007 6:54 am
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degrassifan wrote:
I know that. What I meant was that Georg broke up with Elsa because of his love for Maria, just like in real-life, when the real Georg broke up with Princess Yvonne because he had feelings for Maria. Unfortunately, the real Maria didn't feel the same way.

I never read the book Maria wrote. Did she really not feel the same way? How did they end up with children - did she end up finally loving him?

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Thu Oct 04, 2007 6:20 pm
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Young Hoofer
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Bookworm wrote:
I never read the book Maria wrote. Did she really not feel the same way? How did they end up with children - did she end up finally loving him?


She really didn't love him...at first. She only married him because the Mother Abbess told her that it was the will of God for her to marry the Captain and be the second mother to his children, even if it meant a loveless marriage. So when they got married, it was as if she was marrying the children, for she loved them dearly, and she felt as if she were doing God's will.

In time, she did fall in love with him. You won't find this in the book "The Sound of Music" is based on, but she wrote another autobiography called "Maria, My Own Story" (I think). I read it about 2 years ago, and in it, she tells more about her childhood, her years as a postulant, and her marriage with the Captain. It does tell the moment she fell in love with him, but I've forgotten the details.


Thu Oct 04, 2007 6:46 pm
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Oh, okay, thanks for clearing that up. I understand now. :D

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Thu Oct 04, 2007 6:58 pm
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Young Hoofer
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I was just thinking, if there isn't a place for The Lonely Goatherd, then could it be placed in the beginning and sung between Maria and the Mother Abbess rather than My Favorite Things? Goatherd sounds like a mountain folk song from Austria, and since both the Mother Superior and Maria grew up in the mountains, then this would be perfect.

Also, I know on stage, Maria sings Do-Re-Mi to the children when she first meets them. What I want to know is do you guys think it would work on stage for Maria and the children to sing the whole song later on in the play on a mountain top like the movie?


Sun Dec 30, 2007 7:23 pm
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Tony Winner
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[quote="degrassifan"]I was just thinking, if there isn't a place for The Lonely Goatherd, then could it be placed in the beginning and sung between Maria and the Mother Abbess rather than My Favorite Things? Goatherd sounds like a mountain folk song from Austria, and since both the Mother Superior and Maria grew up in the mountains, then this would be perfect.

Also, I know on stage, Maria sings Do-Re-Mi to the children when she first meets them. What I want to know is do you guys think it would work on stage for Maria and the children to sing the whole song later on in the play on a mountain top like the movie?[/quote]

While this idea could be plausible, I doubt it could be effective. Lonely Goatherd would probably be a little too flighty and vivacious for the Mother Abbess's office. However, I especially like the 1998 Broadway revival that placed this song in the Salzburg Festival sequence, so that Maria, the Captain and the children could extol the good that still remained in Austria. I think this song parallels with the hoe-down scene at the Box Social in the second act of Oklahoma. I think that if this song were to be placed in the Salzburg Festival scene it would probably perform the same function as The Farmer and the Cowman.


Mon Dec 31, 2007 5:04 am
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Fresh Face
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the school production I was in exactly mirrored the revival version...which blended aspects of the movie and the stage.. personally I found it more effective. After the show ended I read up on the original stage version (I had only been familiar with the movie before being in the show) and much preferred the way we did it. (Although I would have loved to have done the extra singing lines for Sr. Margaretta that I read in the score!!)


Fri Jan 04, 2008 2:45 am
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