Von Trapp Family Didn’t Want Carrie Underwood, Either

    December 6, 2013
    Amanda Crum
    Comments are off for this post.

Carrie Underwood has taken a lot of hits for her starring role in the television remake of “The Sound Of Music”, and has even gotten death threats. Apparently the public didn’t take too kindly to the “American Idol” alum stepping into Julie Andrews’ shoes. But as it turns out, the real von Trapp family didn’t want her, either.

“It’s just upsetting that this could potentially be the final broadcast of our story,” said Myles von Trapp Derbyshire, the great grandson of Maria von Trapp. “And although her voice is amazing, she doesn’t have acting experience…. It’s just the overall image, she’s a country star, she won ‘American Idol,’ she’s very public in kind of a tabloid way.”

The family says they wanted Anne Hathaway to portray Maria, especially after her Oscar-winning turn in “Les Miserables”. Francoise von Trapp, Maria’s granddaughter, blogged about the musical–and the producers’ casting choice–recently, saying that although Underwood is a talented country singer, she just didn’t seem suited to the role.

“Carrie Underwood as Maria? Seriously?” von Trapp wrote. “I mean, I have nothing against her personally – she’s an extremely talented country singer, but I’m pretty sure my father is repeatedly rolling over in his grave. Since the movie version of SOM won an Academy Award the year I was born, it’s always been easy to identify with Julie Andrews’ portrayal of my grandmother. It’s a little harder to envision Carrie that way. (But I do realize that’s what happens when Hollywood freezes time.) And while the girl can sing (although her voice lacks the Soprano purity of Julie Andrews) can she act? I’d like to know who else was in the running. Personally, I’d have put my money on Ann Hathaway, who in her upcoming role as Fantine in Les Miserable, proves that she can act and sing.”

Some of the von Trapp family members were loathe to watch Underwood’s version, but Myles von Trapp Derbyshire said he would, if for no other reason than to be educated about it when the inevitable questions come today.

  • Lou Kane

    Stupid comments from great-grandchildren whose claim to fame is being great-grandchildren. A bunch of leeches

    • http://www,yahoo.com betty meeks


  • Raymond Wennier


    • MGrand


  • Diana

    I agree, Carrie Underwood was horrible in this production. It was awful, from beginning to end. Even if I hadn’t seen the original when it first came out when I was 6 I still wouldn’t have liked it. They should have left it alone. I watched it for the WalMart commercials that had a man who works with me (Don Brooks)his wife and his family of 13 children in them. They were far better.

    • Greg

      Hate much? Enjoy the rest of your miserable year.

    • Cari

      What a hateful thing to say. Also, who do you think you are to critique her like that? She wasn’t awful, not at all. The scene where the song Climb Every Mountain, Carrie shows such emotion. Sure she doesn’t have the acting chops of others, but to go with no acting experience whatsoever to something as daunting as this challenge…I think she did an exceptional job with the task at hand. How can people be so mean spirited and so hateful. You think you could have done better? Don’t be so quick to judge!

  • Shelle Shoup-Howard

    Had Anne Hathaway performed, I wouldn’t have wasted my time, I think Carrie did an awesome job. They should be GRATEFUL that Hollywood took the time to re-tell their story.

    • carol

      I think Anne Hathaway would have been interesting … however … there are some things that should be left alone … and this is one of them …. the Sound of Music is a classic …. Carrie Underwood, I think not ,,, just out of curiosity I watched the nuns singing for about a minute and a half and then later Underwood for about 10 seconds …. oh please …. SOM is Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer, I don’t blame the grand and great grandchildren, this is their family story

  • Fan From Tampa

    Watched the show last night with my family. We all thought Carrie and the rest of the crew were fantastic. What a wonderful family show. Thank you for bringing that program to TV… We will watch it over and over…

    • cmarvin

      I will watch it over and over Carrie wes GREAT

  • Marilyn

    Come on people!! REALLY?? Give a girl a break!! NO ONE could EVER out sing, or upstage Julie Andrews’ acting/singing performance in THE SOUND OF MUSIC. However, this was LIVE performance. No out-takes allowed. I was a voice major . . . have sung and acted in local theatre and danced for years. I grew up watching The Sound of Music. You can pick and critize anything and anyone, but WHY do so?? WHY not appreciate the EFFORT made to re-create a beautiful storyline, and some of the most beautiful music ever written!! All I see with your criticism of Carrie and the LIVE production of The Sound of Music is a bunch of spoiled family members who obviously don’t appreciate much at all. And I dare say not even Anne Hathaway (who I admire) could have satisfied people in the role of Maria either. You cannot replace or compare to an icon like Julie Andrews. No one was trying to do so. They were trying to give people the opportunity to “experience” some of the greatest music every created!! Just my op;inion!!

    • Robert Natale

      I totally agree with you, Marilyn. I think it was well done & I
      thought Carrie did a credible acting job. I’ve seen the original
      a lot of times & in local productions as well. The people that
      perform always do an excellent job. I never get tired of the music. I don’t try to compare to Julie Andrews. I can’t imagine why some people want to be so critical. I also the actors playing
      the 7 children did well.

    • Lynn

      You are crazy if you think that was a good performance. However, you are entitle to your opinion evenif it is wrong.

  • George Kuhns

    I was pleasantly surprised how good Carrie Underwood performed. She deserves an Emmy for her performance. I saw the original in 1966. Came out of the theater and my car had been stolen. As I watched it on TV last night I kept looking outside to make sure my car was still there. (-: Excellent job Carrie.

  • Joyce Warner

    I watched it for the first time and enjoyed it. In the past when it was on I din’t care or Julie Andrews so I never watched the entre movie.
    I thought Carrie did a great job.

  • Gerry

    Carrie did a wonderful job as did the rest of the cast. It was a great show and nothing for the Von Trapps to criticize.
    Great job, Carried. You should be proud.

  • John

    I think the family is being overly critical of Carrie Underwood. To use a phrase in movies, Sound of Music was based on true events and it’s a nice story (I loved the movie) but most musicals are not historically accurate. There are websites that point out the differences between the real story and the movie version. I thought she did a great job singing, but some of the acting scenes did lack the same type of emotion she’s able to express through singing. To be honest, she’s not an experienced actress (yet). I think she would have given a better acting performance if she had more acting experience under her belt. I think if she did this in another year or two, it probably would be a lot better. To say Underwood tarnished the family legacy is utterly ridiculous.

  • brenda

    I loved the show Carrie was amazing I thought she did a great job for live tv wow what was the family thinking even the behind scenes takes talent to pull this off Good Job Carrie

  • http://yahoo James Reyes

    I agree with the entire Von Trapp family. That country HAM ruined one of the greatest musicals ever made. I bet Maria Von Trapp is spinning in her grave after hearing about it. Julie Andrews and The late Mary Martin will both be forever as Maria Von Trapp in both the stage and screen versions of The Sound of Music.

  • Terry

    I thought Carrie did a great job….For someone with little acting experience and doing this live I enjoyed the show and the rest of the cast. I would re watch this anytime.

  • Nancy

    The grand kids need to do some research. If you read interviews with older family and friends, Maria was not the sweet thing Andrews protrayed. I don’t see how Undewood tarnished this myth. If she were here today, Maria might be diagnosed as bi-polar.

    • Maria came to the von Trapp family in 1926 as a tutor for one of the children, Maria, who was recovering from scarlet fever, not as governess to all the children.

    •Maria and Georg married in 1927, 11 years before the family left Austria, not right before the Nazi takeover of Austria.

    •Maria did not marry Georg von Trapp because she was in love with him. As she said in her autobiography Maria, she fell in love with the children at first sight,
    •There were 10, not 7 von Trapp children and the names, ages, and sexes of the children were changed.

    •The family was musically inclined before Maria arrived, but she did teach them to sing madrigals.

    •Georg, far from being the detached, cold-blooded patriarch of the family who disapproved of music, as portrayed in the first half of The Sound of Music, was actually a gentle, warmhearted parent who enjoyed musical activities with his family.

    •The family did not secretly escape over the Alps to freedom in Switzerland, carrying their suitcases and musical instruments. As daughter Maria said in a 2003 interview printed in Opera News, “We did tell people that we were going to America to sing. And we did not climb over mountains with all our heavy suitcases and instruments. We left by train, pretending nothing.”

    •The von Trapps traveled to Italy, not Switzerland.

    •Instead of the fictional Max Detweiler, pushy music promoter, the von Trapps’ priest, the Reverend Franz Wasner, acted as their musical director for over 20 years.

    •Though she was a caring and loving person, Maria wasn’t always as sweet as the fictional Maria. She tended to erupt in angry outbursts consisting of yelling, throwing things, and slamming doors. Her feelings would immediately be relieved and good humor restored, while other family members, particularly her husband, found it less easy to recover. In her 2003 interview, the younger Maria confirmed that her stepmother “had a terrible temper. . . . And from one moment to the next, you didn’t know what hit her. We were not used to this. But we took it like a thunderstorm that would pass, because the next minute she could be very nice.”

  • Carol Somerville

    Carrie Underwood was ok. The thing that made my stomach turn was the Walmart commercials and sponsorship. This multibillion dollar slave-labor company cynically sponsoring this cozy family values,god and convent, anti-nazi show is repellant. Walmart is the nazi in our midst and we don’t even see it!

  • pcorn

    Totally agree with the Family. The teenagers producers picked Carrie Underwood because Miley Cyrus was too busy playing with a wrecking ball.

  • Rose

    Bravo Carrie Underwood – a fantasic job!! The show was amazing and the entire cast did a supurb job. Bravo!

  • Kristi

    I have to say Carrie Underwood needs to stick to country music. She does not have the vocal range to do SOM justice. I do not agree that Anne Hathaway should of had the role either. They really should have tried to match the vocal BRILLIANCE of Julie Andrews, with all the talent in the world it truley was an INJUSTICE to have mutilated SOM with Ms. Underwood.

    • Cari

      What drugs are you on? Some could say that Carrie didn’t act as well as Julie, but as far as the singing went, Carrie nailed it! Your perception is so flawed if you think she mutilated the music in any way.

  • Lisa

    There were things that bugged me about this production and things that I enjoyed. I must say that Carrie sounded very much like Julie during some of the songs.

  • liberty

    Underwood would have made a great Liesl, but Anne Hathaway or Kristen Chenoweth would have knocked Maria out of the park!

  • http://morninglight.webplus.net Joe

    I really enjoyed the NBC version of the Sound of Music. It was really nice to hear all the music for a change, including two songs left out of the movie. The original versions of the title song, 16 going on 17, etc. Carrie Underwood was excellent as Maria but I especially like the lady who played Mother Superior. The only problem I had was the orchestra played a little too loudly and the singers couldn’t be heard very well, but that was adjusted as the show went on. I often wondered why they changed the movie up so much.

  • Elena

    Comparing “The Sound of Music” Live to “The Sound of Music” the movie is like comparing apples to oranges. A live show always has little glitches, some more noticeable than others. A movie has the luxury of doing retakes if someones voice cracks or something goes not quite as planned. A live show is limited by the logistics of using sets and having to do quick costume changes. A movie is a large scale operation, even when using sets and costume changes do not have the same urgency.

    I enjoyed last evenings performance very much. All the actors gave it their best effort. Carrie Underwood’s lack of acting experience showed. It would have been nice if they had tried to tame her country accent. It showed when she sang “doe, a deerrr”. But, I truly believe that she gave it her all, and I appreciate that.

    I still prefer the movie. I love the bigness of it. I love Julie Andrews voice. I love her stage presence. Carrie Underwood is no Julie Andrews. But guess what? Julie Andrews is no Carrie Underwood! I sincerely doubt that Julie Andrews could belt out a country song the way that Carrie can.

    It absolutely floors me that Carrie Underwood would receive death threats for being cast as Maria. She would not have been my choice, but it was not my choice to make. It is not a reason to threaten to kill someone. It’s called a difference of opinion and we are ALL entitled to our opinions. We are NOT entitled to kill (or threaten to kill) because of a difference of opinion. I don’t understand the hatefulness of some comments either. If you don’t like something, so be it. You can state that if you must…or not. You don’t have to be hateful though. Those types of comments say more about the commenter than the commented upon.

    So, for the record, I thoroughly enjoyed last evenings live performance of “The Sound of Music”….warts and all! Good job everyone!

  • Natureman

    No real need to redo a classic. Shows how little talent exists in Hollywood today. They keep remaing stuff that has already been written and done. I could care less whether Carrie did a good job or not. There just was no real need to redo this classic by Rodgers and Hammerstein.

  • john

    We took it for what it was, a live stage production for TV without a live audience. In that context overall it was very entertaining at least to us. What really disturbed us was the POOR sound quality, a constant background hissing that was very annoying and took away from our focus on the play. And, the 4-1/2 to 5 minute commercial breaks really broke the continuity of the play. It simply broke the flow.

    Recommend NBC clean up the audio mess and figure out a way to limit the commercials to make it more appealing if they do this again. (I don’t deny they need to have commercial sponsors to pay for the production, just don’t clutter up the floe of the play every 10 minutes or sol

  • CC

    This was a great production of TSOM and I really enjoyed the award-winning cast. They blew me away!
    Critics who can’t see past the 1965 movie with Julie Andrews, should remember that this was originally a 1950s broadway production starring Mary Martin – and those fans allowed for the 1965 movie without such vitriol.

    Broadway and Opera regularly produce new performances of classic shows, what is the problem?
    It is important to appreciate performing talent – old and new- as well as the beautiful music and lyrics from Rodgers and Hammerstein!
    Would you really prefer that such beautiful music never be sung and performed again – – never to be introduced to newer audiences? Come on now, that is just silly.

    Carrie was terrific and this new production really reminds me how singing was never Christopher Plummer’s greatest strength (surely not cast for his singing).

    Audra McD brought down the house with her performance – WOW!!

    I really appreciated last night’s production, it was a fun night!

  • Elly

    I wasn’t impressed with the remake at all. The rest of the cast was ok, but I didn’t care for Carrie as Maria. Her acting was terrible. It was obvious she had no acting experience before this movie. A 5 minute role in Soul Surfer doesn’t count as experience.

  • bill

    While, I didn’t think it was horrible, I alos didn’t think Carrie was the wisest choice either. She was good in the musical numbers and the scenes with the children, but over-all her acting was equivalent to that of a high school performer (sorry, Carrie) She needs more experience and seasoning as an actress, though I don’t blame her for excepting a once-in-a-lifetime role. I watched the movie mainly as a fan of Steve Moyer, but I’ve got to say even his acting was a bit one-dimentional, though I was pleasantly surprised by his singing. The stand-outs for me, were, Audra McDonald as Mother Abbess and Laura Benanti as Baroness Schraeder. They made the rest the cast look like rank amatuers (which some indeed were). Audra was especially superb, in both her acting and singing, and deserves an award. Also, I can see why some of thoses songs were dropped from the 1965 movie. They added nothing for me and I missed the “I have Confidence” number, the puppet show, and Captain Von Trapp snging of Edelweiss to the children earlier in the plot. I realise they stuck to the script of the origial play, but to the detriment, not improvement (IMO) of the production.
    Our 12 yr did son did enjoy it, having never seen the original. I, however would stick to the classic 1965 version.

  • carol

    Carrie is a amazing singer it was a musical not a movie.If they wanted a actress they should have gotten Merrill Streep

  • shellyd0623

    I saw it many years ago with Julie Andrews and it was wonderful. I watched it, last night, with my grand-daughter(7). I thought she’d be bored with it, but she absolutely loved it and hopes it will be out soon on dvd. We plan to watch the Julie Andrews version soon for the comparison.
    I wish the new version had more of the history in it as was in the 1st. production. My 2nd. grades is already studying world history and we were looking for that part of the story. It ended too soon!

  • Rob

    But as it turns out, the real von Trapp family didn’t want her, either.Big deal people in *ell want Ice Water. My wife thought the
    whole show was great and Underwood was spot on…

  • Jim

    Maybe Carrie did a good job, but I was really disappointed in comparison to e Julie Andrews performance.

  • Sue

    You can’t compare her to Julie Andrews because there is only one Julie Andrews. Get over that people!

  • Rita

    Maybe Carrie Underwood isn’t an actress,but they could not have picked a better angel to sing those songs.
    If my family was being honored in a multi million dollar live preformance I believe I would be grateful. No one is watching the movie of my grandmothers family coming from Germany in the early 1900’s. So be thankful that you get to see your family immortalized even after 85 years.

  • Rita

    One more thing, this was to be an adaptation of the 1959 broadway play with Mary Martin, not the movie.

  • http://CouchPotatoReduxonWeebly Joe Beauchamp

    Why would anybody worry about who plays Maria Von Trapp? The Von Trapp’s seem like a bunch of snobs to me. I wouldn’t have cared if Loretta Lynn had played the part.

  • barry

    Poor production! Carrie’s acting was horrible! What a waste of time.

  • me

    Sorry but they are very rude to publicly talk this way. Have some class.

  • ron

    really.black mother superior. why does all history have to be re-written with blacks in position of authority. put a white in for black and watch the media go crazy.

    • Lynn

      You are a moron!

  • Margaret Scully

    Margaret. I think she did a great job, especially for not having acting experience. Well, now she does! We all have to start somewhere. Remember this was a live show not the movie version, & think it was based on the stage production not the movie. I think Julie Andrew would give Carrie high praise as well as the entire cast. Good work,Miss Underwood!

  • Crey

    For Carrie to be a country music star, I think she did a great job with no prior acting experience. The grand kids are just being overly critical. Stop comparing her to Julie Andrews for God’s sake. For those who hated it, remember no one forced you to watch it. But everyone is entitled to their own opinion.

    I also agree with the other person, I wouldn’t have mind seeing Kristen Chenowith play Maria

  • John

    They forgot to tell Carrie that she wasn’t singing at a Rodeo. Awful.