BWW Reviews: The Eccles Theater is Alive with THE SOUND OF MUSIC

BWW Reviews: The Eccles Theater is Alive with THE SOUND OF MUSIC

The national tour of THE SOUND OF MUSIC brings the beloved songs and story to the Eccles Theater.

The musical (music by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, book by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse) opened on Broadway in 1959 and was adapted to the Academy Award-winning film in 1965. It follows Maria, a postulant who becomes the governess for a captain's seven children in World War II-era Austria.

Jill-Christine Wiley, who plays Maria, is a likeable performer and is well paired with Mike McLean, who is firm but gentle as Captain von Trapp.

As expected, the children are cute as can be, and Lauren Kidwell's powerful rendition of "Climb Every Mountain" as the Mother Abbess is a highlight. However, the most enjoyable performance is unexpectedly that of Melissa McKamie as a shrewd but winsome Elsa Schraeder.

Overall, the young cast works hard, but their inexperience shows in their rote enactment of somewhat misguided direction that focuses more on getting from point A to point B than on the natural consequences of character choices.

Still, this is a perfectly serviceable production of a classic favorite and is inoffensive and laudable in its efforts to share the original stage musical with both young and old fans of the material.

The scenic design by Douglas W. Schmidt features an intricate lace pattern that is quite lovely when paired with a watercolor-style mountain backdrop and the nuanced lighting design by Natasha Katz. The wide range of styles incorporated into the costume design by Jane Greenwood is impressive and works well in concert with the rest of the production.

THE SOUND OF MUSIC plays the Eccles Theater for a limited engagement through Sunday, March 4, 2018. For tickets, call ArtTix at 801-355-ARTS (2787) or visit

The exciting 2018-19 season of Broadway at the Eccles, including COME FROM AWAY and ALADDIN, was announced at the opening night of THE SOUND OF MUSIC. For more information, visit

Photo Credit: Jill-Christine Wiley as Maria and cast. Photo by Matthew Murphy.

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