The hills of Coventry are alive with The Sound of Music and it is a joyous occasion. This musical truly is timeless.
It’s always a pleasure to see this story brought to life on stage and the current UK Tour does not disappoint. Taking the reins as leading lady is Lucy O’Byrne and she was sublime. Gorgeous vocals coupled with a subtle innocence and utter likability made her the best Maria I’ve seen on stage.
Under her watchful eye the Von Trapp children were surprisingly well drilled. I throughly enjoyed each of their performances and a strong ensemble completed an exceptional cast. Special mention must go to Howard Samuels in the role of Max Detweiler and particularly notable was Megan Lewellyn as Mother Abbess who was endearing and down-right impressive. Her rendition of Climb Ev’ry Mountain reached a glass-shatteringly good crescendo leading us into the interval gobsmacked and in awe.
The design of this production is exquisite and illustrates the story beautifully. Gary McCann’s set has a grandiose feel about it and effectively transforms the stage whilst Bill Deamer intertwines his stunning choreography to maximise the space – almost recreating the famous stair-hopping scene. Gorgeous costume design is the final cherry on the top of this exceedingly delicious cake.
For those of you who are major fans of the film (like myself), be prepared for some rejigging. There are songs in different places, songs lost and songs added. I must say, I prefer the flow of the film but it certainly doesn’t take away from this brilliant production.
This is an outstanding rebirth of a timeless and heartwarming classic.
The Sound of Music is at the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry until 10th February before continuing on its UK Tour.
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*Production Images by Brian McEvoy