‘Sound of Music’ star Julie Andrews reflects on recent reunion with von Trapp children: ‘We’re family’


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Julie Andrews has never said “so long, farewell” to her “Sound of Music” family.

On Wednesday, the actress appeared on the “Today Show,” where she discussed her close bond with the remaining cast of the 1965 film. 

Several of the cast members who played the von Trapp children, including Nicholas Hammond (Friedrich), Duane Chase (Kurt), Angela Cartwright (Brigitta), Debbie Turner (Marta) and Kym Karath (Gretl) reunited earlier this month for the 86-year-old’s AFI Life Achievement Award ceremony.

“We do keep in touch, but not on a really regular basis,” Andrews explained. “I mean, Christmases, maybe birthdays and certainly get-togethers, but we just bonded so hard that I think we’re family anyway.”

‘SOUND OF MUSIC’ STARS, WHO PLAYED VON TRAPP CHILDREN, REUNITE TO HONOR JULIE ANDREWS AT AFI’S TRIBUTE

The recent reunion was bittersweet for the star. Christopher Plummer, who played Capt. Georg von Trapp, her love interest in the film, died last year at age 91.

(L-R) Debbie Turner, Angela Cartwright, honoree Julie Andrews, Nicholas Hammond, Kym Karath and Duane Chase attend the AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute to Julie Andrews at Dolby Theatre June 9, 2022, in Hollywood.
(Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images for AFI)

“We were friends for years,” said Andrews, adding that she “adored” him tremendously.

“It really was the most beautifully crafted movie,” she said. “I mean, the details in the movie, first of all, the scenery, children, song, music – all of it.”

The classic musical tells the story of the real-life von Trapp family, which escaped the Nazis in Austria. It went on to win the Oscar for best picture. Andrews received an Academy Award nomination for her role as Maria, a woman who is sent by her convent in 1930s Austria to become a governess to the seven children of a widowed naval officer.

The reunion wasn’t a complete one. In addition to Plummer’s passing, Charmian Carr, who played Liesl, died at age 73 from a rare form of dementia in 2016. Her on-screen sister, Heather Menzies-Urich, who played Louisa, died at age 68 after she was diagnosed with cancer in 2017.

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Actress Julie Andrews performs a musical number in the movie "The Sound Of Music," directed by Robert Wise, 1965. 

Actress Julie Andrews performs a musical number in the movie “The Sound Of Music,” directed by Robert Wise, 1965. 
(Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

In 2018, Cartwright spoke to Fox News Digital about what it was like working with Andrews in “The Sound of Music.”

“I loved her,” the 69-year-old said at the time. “We all did. You can kind of tell in the movie. We totally enjoyed her. She embraced us right from the very beginning. She sang to us in between takes, and we would dance. She just did ‘Mary Poppins’ so she would sing all these songs from that film. I mean, you can really tell that we adored her. She’s such a talent. She has such an amazing voice, and it really was a great experience.”

She also noted that the cast shares a close bond today.

The actors playing members of the Von Trapp family in a promotional portrait for "The Sound Of Music," directed by Robert Wise, 1965. Left to right: Nicholas Hammond as Friedrich, Kym Karath as Gretl, Angela Cartwright as Brigitta, Julie Andrews as Maria, Christopher Plummer as Captain Von Trapp, Charmian Carr as Liesl, Heather Menzies as Louisa, Debbie Turner as Marta and Duane Chase as Kurt.

The actors playing members of the Von Trapp family in a promotional portrait for “The Sound Of Music,” directed by Robert Wise, 1965. Left to right: Nicholas Hammond as Friedrich, Kym Karath as Gretl, Angela Cartwright as Brigitta, Julie Andrews as Maria, Christopher Plummer as Captain Von Trapp, Charmian Carr as Liesl, Heather Menzies as Louisa, Debbie Turner as Marta and Duane Chase as Kurt.
(Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images)

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“It’s fascinating because sometimes you make a movie, and you don’t really see each other anymore or stay in touch,” Cartwright explained. “But we’ve all stayed in touch. We’ve certainly gotten together for celebrations and reunions. Whenever we lose a cast member, it always feels like we lost a family member. We all know what’s going on in each other’s lives and we’ve continued to do that during the 50-plus years [since filming].”



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