The Sound of Music Makes a Return
Bill Kenwright’s production of one of the greatest family musicals of all time The Sound of Music returns to Blackpool Opera House.
This musical masterpiece tells the true story of the world-famous Trapp family, from their romantic beginnings and search for happiness, to their thrilling escape to freedom as their beloved Austria becomes part of the Third Reich at the start of the Second World War. The tour comes to Blackpool Opera House from Tuesday 18th - Saturday 22nd February.
Andrew Lancel will reprise his role as Captain von Trapp. Andrew is best known as super-villain Frank Foster in Coronation Street, a role that earned him a 'Villain of the Year' award at the British Soap Awards. He also played DI Neil Manson in the long-running ITV television series The Bill.
Playing the role of Maria in this spectacular production will be Emilie Fleming. Emilie became a household name when she was a finalist in BBC One’s Over the Rainbow with Andrew Lloyd Webber. Her musical theatre credits include the West End’s 20th Anniversary production of Les Misérables at the Queen’s Theatre.
Producer Bill Kenwright said “The music and narrative of The Sound of Music are timeless. It’s a beautiful story about family and hope. The score transcends generations and the songs are known and loved by everyone.”
This wonderfully lavish staging of the classic musical has delighted audiences and critics alike. Produced by Bill Kenwright, it is directed by Martin Connor and choreographed by Olivier Award winner Bill Deamer, with musical direction by Jeremy Wootton.
Luckily for us, former star of Coronation Street and The Bill, Andrew Lancel, and BBC One’s Over the Rainbow finalist, Emilie Flenning tell us about performing in the iconic musical.
Quickfire Q&A with Andrew Lancel:
What made you want to be a part of the production?
"I’ve been longing to do a Rogers and Hammerstein musical since I graduated. I love their music. I grew up listening and singing along to it. My family always shared a love of that genre and style of music with me and my voice really suits it. It’s simple but so detailed at the same time. It’s true, colourful, emotional and not overcomplicated.
"The Sound of Music doesn’t come around very often, so this was an amazing opportunity. It’s such a classic favourite; people just know they’re going to enjoy it, that they’re going to have a good time".
The Sound of Music is one of those musicals that means so much to so many people. What does it mean to you?
"For me, it’s all about hope and love. I don’t think you can hide from the fact that it’s a bit of a crazy world at the minute. With The Sound of Music, for a couple of hours you can sit in a theatre and see people who’ve lost everything get something back.
"It has a real presence of danger in it and it’s not a million miles away from what’s happening in certain countries now, but it is also escapism, and we all need a bit of that, don’t we? I think the reason why it is possibly the greatest musical of all time and certainly one of the most popular is that it’s just full of hope and love and fun."
Quickfire Q&A with Emilie Flenning:
Maria is an iconic role. How do you feel about playing her?
"I’m just in awe of Julie Andrews. Once you’ve watched her in the film, she is Maria. When you see her portray this role, there’s just so much detail. You can hear every single detail of every single word. I definitely take all of that in my own journey as well, vocally."
How do you feel about taking the production on tour around the UK?
"This is my first tour, so I am excited. I am definitely a bit of a nomad. I’ve moved house a lot and I’m very good at packing, so I feel I’ll be good at it.
"Touring is so important. I grew up in a working class family in South Shields and I couldn’t afford to come down to London. I’ll never forget when I saw Miss Saigon at the Sunderland Empire and I cried the whole way home in the car. If I didn’t have those shows touring to local venues, I may never have discovered that I wanted to perform.
"I think it’s hugely important to encourage the new generation going forward, to expose them to theatre and music, because more and more music and the arts is being cut in schools, so we’ve really got to take the tours to as many venues as possible across the whole country. There’s so much talent out there, but it all comes down to seeing performances; that’s what triggers the inspiration."
Tickets start from £19.00 and can be purchased directly from the Winter Gardens, Blackpool, here.