It’s no secret my favourite film of all time is The Sound of Music. It’s a film I’ve grown up with – from wanting to be Marta or Gretl to being so old that if I wanted to be a character now I’d have to be a nun.
My first wedding anniversary was spent in Salzburg (my husband is a good man) – and yes, we did the tour. I will also happily admit to having at least three copies of the film… so yes, a fan.
I’ve also a fine collection of books relating to the film (and the real-life Maria Von Trapp), so I was pretty excited when it was announced last year that the seven actors and actresses who played the Von Trapp children would be releasing a book of their memories from the film. There’s a lot of information out there – and indeed most of the ‘children’ have their own websites with memories and photos – so what can this book offer that’s not already out there?
SO MUCH MORE.
Oh my. You know when you get a book and it’s been put together with love? Where the littlest things are shared but make you feel a part of it? That’s this book. It’s one I’ll have to keep out of my daughter’s way until she’s old enough to appreciate it (and wants to be Gretl), as within the book of memories (and some photos which have never been seen before) there’s a DVD of their (being Charmian Carr, Nicholas Hammond, Heather Menzies, Angela Cartwright and Debbie Turner) home movies from 1964 (which I shall be watching later on), and four fold out envelope-type pages with various bits (called ‘facsimile items’) the cast have saved – we’re talking letters to home from a 5-year-old Kym Karath (Gretl), a plane ticket to and from Salzburg to film. I’m a bit of a hoarder and this kind of stuff is something I can really appreciate – it’s an insight into the kinds of things that went on behind the scenes and how well everyone got on.
If you’ve followed anything to do with the film, then it’s no secret the seven actors are all still in touch and remain close. This book brings their sense of togetherness – how they were all there for each other when there’s been heartbreaking things happening in real lives, as well as the happier moments.
This isn’t the kind of book you’d sit and read in one sitting – it’s one you’d keep dipping in and out of (is this what a ‘coffee table book’ is? Damn.) – with each individual ‘child’ giving their history and what happened after the film.
At the moment the book is unreleased in the UK. I’ve no idea why. I’ve no idea where my husband bought it (probably Amazon), but I have it, and I treasure it – if you love The Sound of Music, then chances are you’ll treasure it too. One day H will also grow to treasure it, but maybe when she’s a bit older. I wouldn’t want to have my facsimile items all coloured in one day…