‘Sound of Music’ fills Tuacahn amphitheatre

Set against a backdrop of Tuacahn’s red rock version of the Swiss Alps, the ever-popular production of The Sound of Music comes to life with all the “Favorite Things” beginning July 19 and continuing on alternating nights with the Disney productions of The Little Mermaid and When You Wish.

Director Tim Threlfall says he thinks the contrast between the two highly technical and dazzlingly entertaining Disney shows and the poignant, historical message of The Sound of Music may prove to be the latter production’s greatest strength.

“This is not a show with a lot of ‘Tuacahn-ization,’” Threlfall says. “We’re not using the flood, the water curtain or fireworks… Adding spectacle would be inappropriate.”

Instead, this intimate view of history showcases one family’s conviction in the face of tremendous political and social pressures that threaten their way of life and, ultimately, their lives.

But that doesn’t mean there isn’t a healthy dose of fun, particularly as the von Trapp children get to know their governess, Maria.

“The kids are so talented,” says Elisabeth Evans, who plays Maria. “I feel like kids can only be kids — they’re so genuine — so we as actors have to be incredibly genuine or the kids will steal the show.”

It’s a give and take Evans has thoroughly enjoyed as the cast explores the many layers and messages found within the construct of this lively musical.

“‘The Sound of Music’ is such a classic show,” says Scott Anderson, artistic director for Tuacahn. “We’re hoping to give people something from our past that is still relevant to our future.”

Threlfall hopes that, by using projected historical footage of the era as one of the production’s few bells and whistles, the audience will gain a greater appreciation for the Von Trapp family’s decision to leave Austria when they did.

“The decision they made was painful but necessary,” Threlfall says. “These were amazing people.”

Set against this historical context, the tremendous cast at Tuacahn will sing their way into the hearts of young and old, delighting audiences with classic favorites including “Do Re Mi,” “Climb Every Mountain,” “My Favorite Things” and more.

The Sound of Music opens July 19 and continues through Oct. 26 in the Tuacahn outdoor amphitheater. Tickets start at just $32. For more information log onto www.tuacahn.org or call 435-652-3300.

Stuart is the founder, writer and wrangler at several sites including Gastronomic SLC, Utah Now and, The Utah Review; Stuart is a former restaurant critic of more than five years, working for the Salt Lake Tribune and has worked extensively with other local publications from Utah Stories through to Salt Lake Magazine and Visit Salt Lake.