WATCH: Steve Wilson Talks About ‘The Sound of Music’ With Elisabeth von Trapp
By Steve Wilson // November 3, 2023
Steve Wilson talks with the granddaughter of Georg and Maria von Trapp
WATCH: Elisabeth von Trapp, daughter of Werner von Trapp and granddaughter of Maria and Georg von Trapp, talks with the Friday Night Locker Room’s Steve Wilson. Elisabeth’s father, Werner von Trapp, was portrayed in the movie, The Sound of Music, as Kurt. Her grandmother, Maria, was played by Julie Andrews, and grandfather, Captain Georg von Trapp, was played by Christopher Plummer.
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – The Sound of Music has always been one of my favorite movies. I saw it in the theatre when I was 12 years old. To this day, I watch it every time it is on TV. That is what made my interview with Elisabeth von Trapp so special.
Elisabeth’s father, Werner von Trapp, was portrayed in the movie as Kurt. Her grandmother was Maria, played by Julie Andrews, and her grandfather was Captain Georg von Trapp, played by Christopher Plummer.
Elisabeth’s grandfather died before she was born, but she knew her grandmother well. Maria did not pass until 1987.
I had so many questions to ask Elisabeth that I did not know where to start!
One thing I was very interested in is, what was Maria really like. Elisabeth told me Maria was, “an amazing individual, she was strong with character and deep of faith.”
She went on to say, “She was always remaking her life and not standing still. She was always interested in what was new and always pondering what could be; what could be done a little out of the ordinary, and how to think differently. I think she was extraordinary. She was one of a kind. I think she was a brilliant individual.”
I asked Elisabeth what Maria thought of the movie. She responded, ‘Well, she was upset with how my grandfather was portrayed, that he was so stern and negative towards the children.” She said, “He was totally the opposite.” Elisabeth continued, “I think my grandmother really enjoyed the fact that this story was retold and that it continues and flourishes in the hearts of people.”
Elisabeth is an accomplished singer/songwriter and actress. In fact, she has played the part of Maria multiple times on the stage. When describing her feelings about playing the part of her grandmother, she said, “I thought to myself, wow, I have a chance to really think about how I know my own grandmother.” She continued, “It was the beginning of being true to myself, first, but within the confines of The Sound of Music. And it was a brilliant moment that shaped that experience, in that moment, kind of gave a whole different impression for me.”
When it was released in 1965, The Sound of Music was nominated for 10 Academy Awards and received five awards, including Best Picture. It’s hard to say what makes it resonate. Maybe it’s the story, the music (my favorite is Climb Ev’ry Mountain), the acting, the scenery, or all of the above. Regardless, it is a classic that will continue to endure the test of time.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Steve Wilson was born in DeRidder, Louisiana and grew up in both New Orleans and Macon, Georgia. He moved to Brevard County in 1984 and retired from local government as the Community Advocate/Assistant to the City Manager with the City of Rockledge in 2018.
Among the awards and accolades Steve has received over the years are 15 + year Rockledge Little League volunteer, Brevard Public School Jefferson Award Recipient, Rockledge High School Raider Booster Award 2001, 2006, City of Rockledge Employee of the Year 2006, Rockledge Kiwanian of the Year 2006-2007, City of Rockledge Quality Public Service Award 2008, 2012, 2017, Rockledge Kiwanis Citizen of the Year 2012-2013, Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame – Sportscasting 2015, Rockledge High School Leadership and Service Award 2016, Central Florida Humanitarian Award 2017, Space Coast Inspiration Award – 2018, Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame – Lifetime Achievement – 2020 and Ecofest Achievement Award – 2022.
Wilson is especially proud of is chairing two fundraisers in support of pediatric cancer research through the St. Baldrick’s Foundation in honor of Merritt Island resident Julie Spurlock that raised over $25,000.00.
He has been a partner, along with Orville Susong, for the past 24 years with the Friday Night Locker Room, a broadcasting team that covers and reports on a wide variety of local events that are of significance to the residents of the Space Coast and beyond. Their mission is to promote youth sports, support first responders and law enforcement personnel, and showcase community and charitable events that are produced by our nonprofit partners in central Florida.
The Friday Night Locker Room has awarded hundreds of sports achievement plaques to Brevard County student-athletes over the years. They have also awarded more than $18,000 in academic scholarships to Brevard County high school seniors.