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Forever Liesl


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About the Author

Charmian Carr was 21 years old when she played Liesl von Trapp in The Sound of Music. Now an interior designer, Carr continues to promote the movie on special occasions. She lives in Encino, California.


It's difficult to believe that even the upcoming 35th anniversary of The Sound of Music could justify this memoir by the girl who played Liesl Von Trapp. The title is apt: although Carr gave up acting to marry a dentist not long after her debut, she doesn't seem to have gotten very far beyond this period of her life. She spends a lot of the book drawing parallels between the film and "life itself," telling her own story alongside the stories of others--she lets us know what happened to her former castmates (curiously, Julie Andrews is absent from her acknowledgments) and reprints testimonials from Sound of Music fans about how important this film was to their lives. A perhaps too-detailed look inside the making of The Sound of Music (there is a whole chapter on why Carr only likes dark chocolate), this is a fairly breathy puff piece. A marginal purchase.--Rosellen Brewer, Monterey Bay Area Cooperative Lib. Syst., Pacific Grove, CA Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.

Published to coincide with the 35th anniversary of The Sound of Music, this memoir by the actress who portrayed Liesl von Trapp offers a detailed account of the creation of the classic, which won five Academy Awards. Carr was 21 at the time she was chosen to play the 16-year-old daughter of Baron von Trapp (Christopher Plummer), a wealthy widow who falls in love with a nun-cum-governess (Julie Andrews). Diehard fans of the tuneful romance may savor these somewhat dated anecdotes, such as the one about the day five-year-old Kym (who played Gretl von Trapp) nearly drowned during a shoot on an Austrian lake or how the famous opening shot of Andrews twirling in a meadow was captured by a camera man strapped to a helicopter. However, those who share Plummer's reputed opinion that the film lacks depth (he referred to the song "Edelweiss" as "boring, schmaltzy and trite") will find wading through this archival minutia tough slogging. One of the more interesting facts imparted in this otherwise syrupy account is the anger Carr and other cast members felt toward the studio, which took advantage of them by convincing them to do free promotion and to sign releases that prevented them from receiving any money generated by sales of the highly profitable sound track. B&w photos. Agent, Lynn Franklin; 10-city author tour. (Feb.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.

"Plenty of behind-the-gazebo tidbits." --Entertainment Weekly"Just as heartwarming as the movie." --Chicago Sun-Times

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