“It’s unusual for us in a modern-day world to get together and have a sing-a-long … there is something very powerful for a community to connect through song!” Chelsea Plumley is not talking about a church choir but rather the Sound of Music Sing-A-Long, which she hosts. United by a love for edelweiss, lonely goat herds, musical mountains, the cranky Captain (Christopher Plummer) and last but not least, Julie Andrews (who Plumley describes as, “feisty and spirited”), this is a community more interested in kitsch than the cross (although a few nuns never go astray). “The film itself is so iconic,” says Plumley, “you’d be hard-pressed not to have heard these songs at one point.” Just in case, the lyrics are displayed on the screen, so when they say sing-a-long, they mean it. There’s also dress-ups – “I once had a woman wear a full wedding with a full train … it’s amazing what lengths people will go to!” – and interactive sections where you get to hiss the Baroness and boo the Nazis. Sound cheesy? Most definitely, but the kind of delicious Swiss cheese you can’t get enough of. In the North American production, they even have an authentic cast member conduct the proceedings, Charmain Carr, who played Liesl von Trapp. When asked who she’d like to grace the stage, Plumley easily answers, “Gosh, it would have to be Julie Andrews … she is so elegant, even to this day.” Andrews might be a bit surprised by all the hysteria still trailing after this movie 45 years after it first hit the silver screens – but after all, once a favourite thing always a favourite thing.
Mar 4-6, State Theatre, 49 Market St, Sydney, $42-48, 136 100, statetheatre.com.au
To be in the running for a free double pass for Mar 6, swing over here.