'Do-Re-Mi': Emerging arts group brings more than just 'The Sound of Music' to Louisville

·5 min read

Fans will get to watch one of the most beloved musicals of all time, "The Sound of Music," comes to life when it's presented by a group focused on giving youth in Louisville a chance to work with some of the top professionals in the theatre and entertainment industry.

Founded by director and producer Beth Craig Hall and entrepreneur and producer Randy Blevins, ARTS at the AMPITHEATER, created by ACT Louisville Productions, develops young talent in Louisville in professional musical theatre productions.

"Our mission is to provide opportunity and access," Blevins told The Courier Journal. "We're getting our feet wet cause we're new producers, and we learned a lot last year and we continue to learn … I don't see any reason why our company couldn't be giving opportunities to new voices and new musicals and new plays."

These young professionals will showcase their talent in "The Sound of Music" with seven performances at the Iroquois Amphitheater, 1080 Amphitheater Road, from July 15-19. "The Sound of Music," is ACT Louisville Productions' second show. It staged "The Wizard of Oz" at the Iroquois Amphitheater in the summer of 2021.

Sydney Warner rehearses the Sound of Music for it’s upcoming run at Iroquois Amphitheater July 15-19.  June 22, 2022
Sydney Warner rehearses the Sound of Music for it’s upcoming run at Iroquois Amphitheater July 15-19. June 22, 2022

Featuring legendary director William P. Bradford II and rising Broadway Star Caroline Glazier in her professional debut, tickets to all seven performances are on sale now and can be purchased at actlouisville.com and at iroquoisamphitheater.com.

“We have assembled a cast and creative team of incredible talent and professionalism including a local and national directing legend. In our second season, we continue our mission to allow young performers and aspiring theatre professionals to experience firsthand how a professional musical production is rehearsed and constructed," Hall, who runs Actors Center for Training and Performing Arts Louisville,said in a press release.

"It is another step to providing true access and opportunity to this level of performing arts for our performers and our community — especially in the South End where I grew up."

Sydney Warner and Violet Newkirk rehearse the Sound of Music for it’s upcoming run at Iroquois Amphitheater July 15-19.  June 22, 2022
Sydney Warner and Violet Newkirk rehearse the Sound of Music for it’s upcoming run at Iroquois Amphitheater July 15-19. June 22, 2022

Background: This group is bringing musical theatre back to Iroquois Amphitheater. Here's what to know

During the audition process, if ALP leadership sees outstanding talent that would benefit from additional training, that performer will be awarded a scholarship to one of the ALP summer camps.

At the camps, which  will not be in session this year but will resume in 2023, students are grouped based on age and ability and are trained in areas of singing, acting and dancing.

ALP is committed to providing opportunities to young talent who may not otherwise have access to trainingfor a variety of reasons, including socioeconomic.

And the young talent is taking that training seriously.

T Russell, who plays Friedrich Von Trapp in the production of "The Sound of Music," said they have seen some of the most focused children during training and rehearsals.

Emerson Taylor and Ruby Semrick rehearse the Sound of Music for it’s upcoming run at Iroquois Amphitheater July 15-19.  June 22, 2022
Emerson Taylor and Ruby Semrick rehearse the Sound of Music for it’s upcoming run at Iroquois Amphitheater July 15-19. June 22, 2022

"When I was younger, at all the other summer camps we would goof around and things like that but in this professional space, there's really no time for that and I've learned a lot of different methods about anything and everything in this professional space," Russell said.

This "The Sound of Music" production features actors from under 10 to 60 years old and seeks to thrill audiences with its Tony, Grammy and Academy Award-winning Best Score, including “My Favorite Things,” “Do-Re-Mi,” “Climb Ev’ry Mountain,” “Edelweiss” and the title song.

Based on "The Von Trapp Singers" book, "The Sound of Music" takes place in the 1930s as Nazism takes hold of Austria, yet it's a story of hope and love for many. Hall said it's interesting to see modern situations on the news coincide with the story of the musical.

"It's interesting how timely things can be, and in the news right now you have what's going on in Ukraine, an outside force that's coming in and taking over a country which is exactly what is happening in the storyline," Hall said.

You may like: Your guide to 25+ best things to do this summer in Louisville and Kentucky

Following the productions this summer, ACT Louisville Productions will continue to provide training opportunities for area youth and encourage them to continue the pursuit of the arts.

"There are so many opportunities and so many roads you can take when it comes to performing arts, and they get to see all aspects from behind-the-stage people and front house people and see all aspects of being involved in the industry," Hall said of the benefits of performing in an ACT Louisville Productions show.

"In keeping with ALP's mission of opportunity and access to the arts, and after feedback from our patrons last summer, we are extremely proud to offer $15 general admission tickets for the entire uncovered seating section at Iroquois Amphitheater," Blevins said.

For more information about ACT Louisville Productions, visit actlouisville.com.

Reach Features Reporter Genesis Malone at gmalone@gannett.com.

'The Sound of Music'

WHAT: ACT Louisville Productions presents "The Sound of Music." The beloved musical story of Maria and the von Trapp Family will once again thrill audiences with its Tony, Grammy and Academy Award winning Best Score, including “My Favorite Things,” “Do-Re-Mi,” “Climb Ev’ry Mountain,” “Edelweiss” and the title song. "The Sound of Music" features music by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, book by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse, suggested by “The Trapp Family Singers” by Maria Augusta Trapp.

WHERE: Iroquois Amiptheater, 1080 Amiptheater Road

WHEN: July 15-19

COST: General admission tickets are $15. Reserved seats are available at $30, $49, and $65 depending on seat location

MORE INFORMATIONactlouisville.comiroquoisamphitheater.com

This article originally appeared on Louisville Courier Journal: ACT Louisville Productions to perform 'The Sound of Music' at Iroquois