The hills of Happy Valley will soon be alive with the sound of music.
The Broadway production of the 1965 musical “The Sound of Music” will make a stop at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday and Wednesday at Eisenhower Auditorium as part of its 60-city tour that spans from October to May 2018.
Presented by Penn State’s Center for the Performing Arts, the performance will feature music by Richard Rodgers and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein. Now 52 years old, the original film has won numerous accolades, including Academy Awards for Best Score, Best Actor and Best Director.
Laura Sullivan, CPA marketing and communications director, said the show is one of five touring Broadway productions offered this season and is a performance the entire family can enjoy.
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“Name recognition, familiarity with the storyline and the music, which just about anyone from 18 to 92 can sing at least one or two lines of lyrics from, make this a popular choice,” she said.
Sullivan said the CPA’s process for preparing for each performance starts up to a year or more in advance.
“It is a detailed and involved process with a lot of moving parts to make the magic happen onstage,” she said.
Certainly familiar with the moving parts onstage is Mary Dennis, assistant stage manager and Penn State alumna, who is touring with the show. “The Sound of Music” will be her first time stage managing a touring show.
“It was a little hectic in the beginning, of course, but now it’s kind of down to a science,” Dennis said. “It’s always kind of fun to walk in a space and see something new and think, ‘OK, how can we change this to make it better?’ ”
Dennis said she worked at Eisenhower Auditorium during her time as a student at Penn State and is familiar with the stage. The biggest difficulty with the production will be ensuring that there’s enough space on stage for all 31 cast members, Dennis said.
“The show is really well staged and beautiful, but the really challenging part is making it fit everywhere we go because not all spaces are the same,” Dennis said.
Over the two nights, Sullivan said she expects to see about 4,000 people attend.
“We still have great seats available at both evening performances,” Sullivan said. “ ‘The Sound of Music’ should be among some of your favorite things.”
Tickets can be purchased online at the Center for the Performing Arts’ website, or in person at one of three locations: Eisenhower Auditorium, Penn State Downtown Theatre Center and the Bryce Jordan Center.
Penn State students can receive discounted tickets thanks to a grant from the University Park Student Fee Board.
Maddie Biertempfel is a Penn State journalism student.
IF YOU GO
- What: “The Sound of Music”
- When: 7:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday
- Where: Eisenhower Auditorium, University Park
- Info: www.cpa.psu.edu