The Corbet Theater stage will come alive with the “Sound of Music” this weekend as Centralia College premieres its spring musical.
Popularized by the 1965 movie starring Julie Andrews, “The Sound of Music” was written by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein in 1959 and is based on the 1949 memoir by Maria Augusta Trapp.
The story is set in 1938 in Austria during the rise of Nazism and follows an aspiring nun who is assigned to serve as governess to seven children under the strict watch of their father, Captain von Trapp. The von Trapps ultimately had to decide whether to stay in Nazi-controlled Austria or instead to flee their homeland.
Despite the heaviness of the setting, “The Sound of Music” is an uplifting tale about the transformative power of music, according to director Emmy Kreilkamp.
“I was really looking forward to doing a feel-good, Golden Age, classic musical because I really haven’t done one of those here. Most of the musicals I’ve done here have been on the dramatic side,” Kreilkamp said. “I think there’s just something really enjoyable about just a classic, Rodgers and Hammerstein musical with a happy ending, especially after the pandemic and all the challenges that people have encountered over the last few years.”
Kreilkamp described the cast size as “giant,” with 25 actors on stage and a 14-member live pit orchestra.
“It’s an intergenerational cast, so it’s fun to be able to work with people of all ages and it’s a learning opportunity,” ensemble member Virginia Schnabel said.
The cast includes community members and former Centralia College students as well as current Centralia College students, such as Jenny Weber, a business student playing Elsa.
“I’m a business student here at Centralia College and Elsa is a business woman in the show, so I thought it was really cool,” Weber said.
Several of the roles for younger children are doubled to ease the pressure on them to perform.
This show is 11-year-old Liesel Stout’s first, and so far she has had fun sharing the role of Marta von Trapp with Ella McCurry, she said.
Since the character of Marta is several years younger than she is, Liesl said, “She just feels younger and so she doesn’t think about things as much as I do, she just thinks about singing and having a mom.”
The show includes many popular musical numbers, including "Climb Every Mountain," "My Favorite Things,” "Do-Re-Mi" and "Sixteen Going on Seventeen."
What makes The Sound of Music different from most musicals for Musical Director Nick Hall “is that every major song from the show is so fun,” he said.
“The Sound of Music” is the first production Hall, a lifelong actor and musician and a current Centralia College student, has been musical director for.
“(Music) is so instrumental to the way I work, as a person, so being here, it just makes sense,” Hall said.
He has particularly enjoyed working with the kids in the production, he said, and encouraging the whole cast to have fun with the music.
“I teach them how to do the notes and the rhythms and things like that, but more than any of that stuff, I want you to have fun doing this, because the music is just so fun and it just fills the room with energy,” Hall said. “Seeing them do that and make the music come alive is what’s fun, and I think the fun that they’re having will be felt among the audience.”
Maria Rainer: Sarah Amador
Captain von Trapp: Chris Cabrera
Mother Abbess: Ruth Newkirk
Sister Berthe, Frau Zeller: Sue Robb
Sister Margaretta: Odette Mohr
Sister Sophia, Maria’s Understudy: Olivia Wiley
Elsa: Jenny Weber
Max: Bill Newkirk
Liesl: Maya O’Dell
Rolf: Derek Kealoha
Louisa von Trapp: Elise O’Dell
Friedrich von Trapp: Zachary Humberg/Charles Stout
Brigitta von Trapp: Brooklynn Berg/Eva Stout
Kurt von Trapp: Malachi O’Dell
Marta von Trapp: Ella McCurry/Liesl Stout
Gretl von Trapp: Amelia Swan/Elise Stout
Frau Schmidt: Anne Schuchmann
Franz: Joe Pettit
Herr Zeller: Nick Strauss
Baron Elberfeld: Dean Phillips
Baroness Elberfeld: Virginia Schnabel
Admiral von Schreiber: Rob Duran
Nuns/Party Guests: Alyssa Graves, Katherine Gulmert, Odette Mohr, Sophia Myers, Virginia Schnabel, Olivia Wiley, Thomas Perkins, Sean Meade
Conductor: Nick Hall
Flute: Tara Attaway
Percussion: Andy Benshoof
Trumpet: Lisa Bratina
Piano: Yvonne Gillian
Clarinet: Suzanne Gunn
Flute: Kaylene Hall
Flute and Piccolo: Mallauri Higgins.
Bassoon and Bass: John O’Conner
Keyboard: Ethan Ondong
French Horn: Amber Smith
Trumpet: Brian Smith
Violin: Katella Smith
Trumpet: Daucie Wilson
Director: Emmy Kreilkamp
Co-director/Musical Director: Nick Hall
Technical Director: Marcus Bingham
Lighting Designer: Danielle Kays
Set Designer: John Olive
Costume Designer: Joy Wood
Vocal Coach: Denise Daverso Choreographer: Celeste Haugan
Rehearsal Accompanist: Yvonne Gillan
Rehearsal Stage Manager: Nick Strauss
Performance Stage Manager: Maddie Gwinn
Run Crew: Jen Dukes, Thomas Perkins, Bailey Woodson
Additional Assistance: Students enrolled in Musical Theatre at Centralia College
Chapel Window Construction: Centralia College Art Club members Landrie Hirz, Odette Mohr, River Larsen, Morgan Meade, and Andrew Barella
Set Construction Crew: William Willis, Kai Ramiriz, Sean Meade, Charles Saunders, Luke Armenia
Light Board Operator: William Willis
Sound Board Operator: Linda Costa
Audio Assistance: Richard Fitzwater
Video Promo/Streaming Tech: Wade Fisher
Program Headshot Photography: Drew Burghardt Lobby Photography: Mike Sage
Graphic Design: Brendan Morrison
IF YOU GO
Corbet Theater is located in Washington Hall on Centralia College’s campus at 600 Centralia College Blvd. in Centralia.
Showtimes are 7 p.m. May 12-13 and May 18-20, and 2 p.m. on May 14 and May 21.
Tickets are $12 for adults, and $10 for seniors and Centralia College students and can be purchased at the door or online at https://www.centralia.edu/pathways/arts-humanities/drama.aspx.
Live-streaming options for the May 20 and May 21 shows are also available.