LONELY goats, brown paper packages tied up with string, the extra wisdom that comes with being seventeen over sixteen, and, of course, the whiskers on kittens. How do you solve a problem like this?
It's no word association game we're playing here. So well-known are these phrases that the melodies jump instantly to mind, lines sewn together like a needle pulling thread. It takes the mind high up into clear mountain air of Austria for another timeless run of The Sound of Music.
Maria, Baron von Trapp and his seven singing children- even the lonely goats- are all coming to The Q for a production of this well-loved classic.
This is the Queanbeyan Players' second major production for the year, and director Janetta McRae promised a true rendition of the story. In fact, she said you couldn't change it if you wanted to.
"It's not a show that you can experiment a lot with because it's a very much part of a time and place, and they're so well-known historically that you can't really update it or put in another timeframe," she said.
"You've got to approach it very straightforwardly and try and make the characters as real as possible."
It's a big show with big sets and a large cast, including a chorus made up of around 25 nuns and postulants, as well as two separate sets of von Trapp children, playing on alternate nights. Otherwise it would prove too much for the littlest children, Ms McRae said, and they'd be out by the second act: auf Wiedersehen, goodnight.
"The children are doing very well," she said. "They're all good singers as well as actors- they've been working very hard and they've really worked around the harmonies. It's coming together very well."
The lead roles of Maria and Baron von Trapp will be played by actors Veronica Thwaites-Brown and Shane Horsburgh, with Christina Philipp handling choreography and musical direction by Jennifer Groom.
And while she's directing this time around, Ms McRae has herself previously performed in a Queanbeyan Players' production of The Sound of Music at the Bicentennial Hall, and said she was looking forward to bringing it into a new, more professional theatre environment at The Q.
And she said there was an enduring appeal to the problems of Maria and her adopted family that still delighted audiences today.
"It's the themes of good versus evil and the little person winning out against the big establishment. It's very cliched but very popular," she said.
"It's a feel good show, and you come away singing in this one."
- Catch 'The Sound of Music' at The Q Performing Arts Centre from November 1-15. Tickets: $45 (Adult), $40 (concession) and $25 children under 15 years. Phone the box office on 6285 6290, or visit www.theq.net.au to book.