The Sound Of Music - performed November 1992

By Rogers and Hammerstein

Performed with the kind permission of Joseph Weinberger

Director - Val Taylor


(in order of appearance)

Maria Rainer Alison Brett
Sister Berthe Jill Laurie
Sister Margaretta Linda Gatt
The Mother Abbess Brenda Chapman
Sister Sophia Sarah McCarthy
Captain Georg von Trapp Nigel Lister
Franz Alan Wheeler
Frau Schmidt Jane Neale
von Trapp Children  
Liesl Nichole Oakes
Fredrich Anthony Crabb
Louisa Victoria Webb
Kurt Alan Crab
Brigitta Amy Potter or Lucy Webb
Marta Sarah McLachlan or Holly Kapitan
Gretl Katie Dacosta or Jenny Laurie
Rolf Gruber Peter Crotty
Elsa Schraeder Clare Morris
Max Detweiller Adrian Bolton
Herr Zeller Jason Davis
Baron Elberfeld Derek Butcher
Baroness Elberfeld Moira Hutt
Admiral von Schreiber Bob Wheatley
Neighbours, Nuns
Novices, Postulants
Viv Wheatley
Jane Cousins
Liz Butler
Debi Koval
Kate Daines
Marion Harvey
Charles Padgham
Chris Mason
Kevan Porter
Roger Licence
Terry Cousins
Chris Mead
Petra Mills

Production Team

Patience Ling, Jude Hussey, Jenny Rollings, Sarah McCarthy, Kevan Porter, Chris Mead, Derek Butcher, Charles Padgham, Bruce Emeny, Maurice Barber, Paul Spendley, Greg Garrad, Alan Laurie, Geoff Taylor, Jackie Dawson, Kevin Lucus, Karen Carter, Moira Hutt, Jenny Glayzer, Chris Wheeler, Rosamund Pettitt, Gill Baxter, Chris Elsey Patience Ling, Viv Wheatley, and other volunteers not mentioned.

The Musical

Maria is a sweet young postulant whose love of freedom makes it obvious to her superiors that she is not suited for religious life. Thus, she is sent off to be the governess to Captain von Trapp's seven troublesome children. Unlike previous governess', Maria becomes friends with the children due to their mutual love of music. Soon, even the strict Captain begins to admire Maria. Eventually, the Captain and Maria fall in love and are married. Unfortunately, when the Nazis invade their homeland, Austria, the whole family is forced to flee over the Alps to escape.


It mattered not that the von Trapp children were missing a few front teeth – the performance was excellent. The highly respected Manifest Theatre Group did it again with its polished, professional performance of the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic The Sound of Music. One of the group’s most ambitious production, the theatre’s notoriously small stage had never looked bigger, with impressive scenery and set design.
Alison Brett player her part well as the coy naive Maria in pre-war Austria, torn between her love of God and her love for Capt von trapp, with her sweet voice singing strongly from the outset. And Adrian Bolton as the flamboyant Max added a welcome touch of humour which he delivered with clarity, so often lacking in amateur theatre. It was the children though, which gave the show its sparkle. There were no nerves, and no forgotten lines, just bags of enthusiasm and clear, powerful singing. Gretl, played by tiny Jenny Laurie, was confident and cute – all the necessary ingredients to steal the show – and she would have done if the fellow players had not bee so good. It was impossible to fault the performance, right down to the tireless pianist who kept things together musically But is was a shame that was no space for a full orchestra, as it is often one of the most enjoyable facets of live theatre. They were all there – Edelweiss, The Hills Are alive, My Favourite Things, and Climb Every Mountain – and were a huge success if the contented humming of the near capacity audience was an indication. I am not sure where amateur dramatics got it name, but it was certainly not after a Manifest performance. The Sound of Music is anything but amateur.

It is something of a miracle that astute director Val Taylor has managed to cram the sweep and range of this Rodgers and Hammerstein musical into such restricted space.
The fundamental impression left is one of total sincerity.
The Children, as always, steal the show.
Headed by Nichole Oakes, dainty Liesl, whose body language is a thing of grace and charm, down to Katie Da-costa’s diminutive elf of a Gretl, they have appeal that brings both laughter and tears. Alison Brett’s immersion in the initially tomboyish, but ultimately delightfully feminine Maria is complete. She sings her sons with unusual phrasing and tone to catch the joy and pathos of each situation. Nigel Lister has the right aristocratic looks and breeding as Von Trapp and seems much more at home with his caring loving patriot than his initial stiff-necked version. The tender love scenes between the two are among the most effective of the evening. Clare Morris uses her eyes to great effect as Elsa, and Adrian Bolton is in his hearty forceful element as Max. All the nuns are very much in character and sing mellifluously, most of all in the soaring Climb Every Mountain and their religious offices. Jill Laurie’s terse, tight-lipped Sister Berthe is perhaps most potent and impressive. Jason Davis makes a nasty, pompous and officious Herr Zeller and Alan Wheeler an ostensibly polite butler, Franz. Bruce Emeny’s lighting adds point and impact to almost every change of mood, and the musical direction of Patience Ling is exemplary.
I wish however the singing of Edelweiss could have involved the audience as Austrians in an outburst of defiance to the lurking German swastika-emblazoned storm-troopers.
Jimmy James

Photo Shoot

If you have any photos from this production, then please let us know.