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Wednesday, August 1, 2007

To laugh like a brook

Midsummer is here, and with it some family time, mostly uninterrupted by work and the internet. I don't spend enough time with my feet on the ground and my eyes looking straight into those of my wife and daughters. When I do, it sends me to another place, far beyond the moon.

Last night we cranked up The Sound of Music on the DVD and watched the whole thing. If you knew nothing else but this about the work of the songwriter Richard Rodgers, you'd still be mightily impressed. As the only person in the room who was alive when this show first appeared on Broadway (in 1959), I had much to explain. Including the fact that the film was such a smash that they trucked whole busloads of us Catholic school kids from Jersey to the Big Apple to see it.

I had forgotten that there was an intermission; I'm glad the producers of the modern digital disk left it in.

There's a lot of interesting stuff happening out there in the wider world, but it can wait.

Comments (11)

The Sound of Music was magical.

It's sad that the talent to make these has gone in other artistic directions.

Mary Martin was the original Maria. I saw it on Broadway with my folks, then learned all the songs on the piano. I'm almost embarassed to admit I probably know all the songs by heart, though my piano playing days are over.

The nuns in my catechism class weren't anything like Maria. But then how do you catch a moonbeam in your hand?

Like Frank, I had the Sound of Music Song book with its easy version of the songs that still sounded good with a novice at the keyboard. I went to the U-TUBE site link, and Christopher Plummer's rendition of Edelweiss just before the family escapes Germany still brings tears to my eyes and is one of my favorite songs ever. But with teenage boys my R & H musical collection gathered dust, as I couldn't hear my treasured songs enhanced by barfing sounds. That is one of the joys of little girls who will sing along and twirl to the music. Enjoy them Jack, the time moves too swiftly and they will be brides like Maria before you know it.

Summer, 1961, in London: I saw it there, I think at the Strand Theater, and fell in love with the young woman who played the oldest Trapp family daughter. Hung around the stage door, angling for a date. I wonder where she is now.

My entire grade school (Lincoln-Eugene)went to the theater run of SoM as a field trip.
My family sang the songs on road trips.
My daughter now 21 fully enjoyed it many years later and it sticks in her mind as very special.

HOWEVER, there is one little part of a song that she and other young ladies of today might find a ltttle off.

"I need someone older and wiser telling me what to do".


My DAD took my sisters and I to see the Sound of Music at the theatre on Broadway which is now the Schnitz, when it was re-released in the 70's. I think it is the only time my dad took we girls to a movie, so it stands out in my memory.

So tragic that the singing voice of Julie Andrews has now been stilled, but wonderful that this film exists to show what a marvelous musical instrument her singing voice was!

Having finished high school in 1969, we (as did many such schools) staged our own production of the musical.
It was a huge hit in our small eastern Oregon town.

And (blushingly), I was quite adept in my portrayal of "Uncle Max" Detweiler!

___ora et labora___

My older sister took me downtown to see it when the movie hit Portland. I'm pretty sure it was at the Music Box. My sis is six years older and did yeoman's duty... my folks used to stick her with me quote often.

I like to watch it, but it is really corny, in a good way.

Yeah. Its good a time or two. My mother was obsessed with show tunes, loved Julie Andrews and saw it over and over and over again. Musicals are funny in that people sing about everything. A law school classmate and I thought about writing a musical based on the Uniform Commercial Code. I can just imagine people in markets all over the world singing about the benefits of uniform rules.

Sorry Cynthia, its been done:

(sung to the tune of "Beat It")

Plead it, plead it, get the federal rules and read it read it.
Get a cause of action, give it to your clerk, yes it may be bogus but you know you need the work, just...

plead it.

The product, sadly, of overworked law student minds back when I was young and that song (and Michael Jackson) was hot.

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