Sound of Music: Perth to come alive to sounds of family favourite

Amy Lehpamer with Perth von Trapp children cast on Government House staircase.
Amy Lehpamer with Perth von Trapp children cast on Government House staircase.

TWELVE talented and fresh-faced youngsters stood on the Government House staircase this morning as The Sound of Music’s Amy Lehpamer, who plays Maria, introduced the Perth von Trapp children cast.

More than 800 children auditioned at WA Ballet Centre in Maylands in June, where they had to sing, dance and act.

The successful 12 children will star opposite Lehpamer, Cameron Daddo and Marina Prior when the London Palladium production opens at Crown Theatre Perth on September 14 after seasons in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Adelaide.

Two different casts will alternate the six youngest von Trapp children roles.

“The children are such an integral part of The Sound of Music, we couldn’t do the show without them,” Lehpamer said.

“It’s been a real highlight for me to work with the children in every city.

“I didn’t actually anticipate the impact working with the kids would have on me as a character and as a performer.

“It’s a little surreal because when you start a new season, they are all so well rehearsed that it seems the same, just with different faces peering up at you.

“It can be a little strange but it doesn’t take very long for them to feel like part of the family.”

The cast announcement included an impeccable performance of Do-Re-Mi.

“Watching the kids makes us see everything through their eyes and realise how special the experience is; we can’t be jaded as performers,” Lehpamer said.

“It is tremendous to have that view and see them grow – literally sometimes too – during a season.”

Shelley 15-year-old twins Bianca and Maddison Thomas are no strangers to the Crown Theatre Perth stage, having been in seasons of Annie and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

The Rossmoyne Senior High School students said they were excited both had been chosen to alternate the role of Louisa.

Fellow Rossmoyne student Thomas Denver, of Shelley, is in the production as Kurt and said the privilege of performing in The Sound of Music was a dream come true.

Austin Matthews, who also plays Kurt, goes to Winthrop Primary School and said his favourite song in the show was So Long, Farewell.

Claudia Drinkwater (Doubleview, Holy Rosary Primary School) and Ava Sharp (Seville Grove, John Wollaston Anglican Community School) share the role of Marta and said they looked forward to such a huge opportunity.

Drinkwater’s favourite song was The Sound of Music, while Sharp loved The Lonely Goatherd because she got to yodel.

Both said they were looking forward to meeting Daddo and Prior.