When was the last time a stage production was broadcast live on TV? 1957, to be exact, with Cinderella. Something like that is unheard of nowadays. But NBC is trying to bring back that magic.
Tonight, the network is airing a live production of The Sound of Music starring Carrie Underwood and Stephen Moyer. If you’re thinking, why should I even bother tuning in when it’s never going to live up to the brilliance of the 1965 film, then here are five reasons why you should watch. (And keep reading to find out how you can win your very own signed Sound of Music Live poster.)
Reason #1: Who Doesn’t Love The Sound of Music?
Seriously, who doesn’t? For one, there’s the exceptional music, which I’ll get into more detail on in a moment.
Then there’s the story. Maria, who seems to always be getting into trouble with the nuns, is swept away to be the governess for the seven von Trapp children. Seeing the relationship between her and the youngsters blossom is fun to watch, and then there’s the budding relationship between Maria and Captain von Trapp. Along the way, the musical talent of this family has them competing in a competition against other groups (see, kids, they had Idol back then).
In an interview during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, Carrie Underwood said, “The Sound of Music — it’s a big legacy, and it’s so important to so many people. Such a beautiful story, beautiful music. We just want to do it justice.”
And even though we all know the movie very well, this live event is actually going to be based on the original stage production as opposed to the movie, so it will be a great way to be introduced to new elements of the story that we’re not familiar with.
Reason #2: The Music is One of My Favorite Things
We can’t talk about The Sound of Music without also mentioning the music by Rodgers and Hammerstein. When you look back over the most memorable musicals of all time, this one always stands out because the songs themselves are classic and people know the lyrics by heart to many of the tunes.
From the title track and “My Favorite Things” to “Do-Re-Mi” and “So Long, Farewell,” you can’t help but sing along. We can all picture the nuns singing “How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?” and the yodeling on “The Lonely Goatherd,” as well as Liesl singing to Rolf about how she’s “Sixteen Going on Seventeen.” It takes us all back to our childhoods, no matter what age we are.
The soundtrack to The Sound of Music Live is available to buy now (and stream on Spotify). And before you watch the live production tonight, check out a couple of the songs you’ll hear.
Here’s Carrie Underwood and Audra McDonald on “My Favorite Things”:
And take a listen to Carrie singing with the children on one of the most fun songs in the entire story, “Do-Re-Mi”:
Reason #3: It’s Live — Anything Can Happen
As the saying goes, with live TV, anything can happen. If someone messes up a line or doesn’t hit their note during a song, it’ll all be captured on TV by millions of viewers. No pressure or anything. But that’s part of the fun for us as viewers: we get to witness this one of a kind experience. NBC recently aired a Making Of special, taking us behind the scenes into the casting process, rehearsals and recording the soundtrack, which you can watch below in its entirety.
Carrie Underwood went all in with her preparation — she even arrived on set three weeks earlier than scheduled, telling the Associated Press, “I wanted to be here and have all my lines memorized and everything and be ready for it. It’s been really wonderful.” These actors are committed to putting on the best show possible despite the stress of live TV.
Reason #4: Carrie Underwood as Maria
And speaking of her, Carrie Underwood is very familiar with live TV, having performed weekly on American Idol, not to mention the countless times she’s hosted the CMA Awards. But she has received some criticism just for the sole reason that she’s not Julie Andrews. As she told Entertainment Weekly, “I get hate tweets and stuff like, ‘You’re not Julie Andrews!’ I know I’m not Julie. Nobody is and I would never pretend that I was … I know my place.”
Fortunately, Andrews has given her blessing. According to US Weekly, she said at an event this fall, “I think [Carrie’s] great. It’s going to be the original show, I believe, and I think after 40 or 50 years, it’s probably time somebody else had a crack at it.”
Carrie’s voice is exceptional, and her persona fits very well with Maria’s innocent nature. She even said during the Making Of special that she sees a part of herself in this character: “She’s a very faithful woman, which I feel like I am as well. Naive, sweet — I hope those are both qualities that I do possess.”
Reason #5: Broadway Stars and Children, Oh My!
Carrie Underwood may be stepping into the shoes of the main character, Maria, but we can’t forget the rest of the cast. Since this event will be more like a Broadway production than a movie, it’s no surprise they’ve brought in Tony Award winners like Audra McDonald (as Mother Abbess) and Christian Borle (as Max Detweiler), along with other talented actors like True Blood‘s Stephen Moyer (playing Captain von Trapp). Carrie might not have a ton of acting experience, but the show is given so much credibility by bringing on the actors I mentioned.
Then there are the children. Maria has an innocence about her, but so do the von Trapp siblings, despite the fact that they’ve terrorized all their governesses. And because of that, the show needs young actors and actresses who embody that spirit and can naturally take on these roles, like we saw with the original group in the film. In the below interview, you can tell that they are having a lot of fun and have been able to bond, which we’re hoping will translate well on screen.
Win a Signed Sound of Music Live Poster
We’re giving away two posters from The Sound of Music Live signed by stars Carrie Underwood and Stephen Moyer.
To enter, all you have to do is click on this link. It will take you to Twitter and you’ll then retweet this @BuddyTV tweet by 7pm ET.
For complete terms and conditions, click here.
The Sound of Music Live airs tonight at 8pm on NBC.
(Image courtesy of NBC)
Staff Writer, BuddyTV
Jeff Dodge, a graduate of Western Washington University, has been a TV news editor for many years and has had the chance to interview multiple reality show stars, including Randy Jackson, Nick Cannon, Heidi Klum, Mel B and John Cena.