Clinical psychologist and freelance writer interested in how the arts influence psychology. Visit my blogs at www.popcornpsych.com & www.omnipsych.com.
You may not know that The Sound of Music was originally a Broadway musical composed by the famous and prolific duo, Rodgers and Hammerstein. Six years after its Broadway debut, it was released as a film (1965) and won the hearts and minds of young and old for decades. Marking its 50th anniversary, The Sound of Music is back on stage, hitting Australian theatres in December 2015.
What is it about this tale and how it is told that resonates with people across cultures and generations, why is it that you can watch it over and over again with the same amount of joy and anticipation but with new insights every time, and how is it that the principle values of the story are still relevant, impactful, and enduring?
Already recognised for its cultural, historical and aesthetic significance by the United States National Film Registry, the narrative's psychological significance is at least of equal value.
The Sound of Music espouses what may be seen as very current and modern ideas about the importance of:
• self- and other-acceptance ("How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria),
• how to cope with uncertainty and fear ("My Favourite Things", "I Have Confidence"),
• the importance of play in children's development and well-being (scenes featuring "Do-Re-Mi")
• facing adversity with integrity and resilience ("Climb Ev'ry Mountain"),
• the importance of values and belonging ("Edelweiss"), and
• the role of music and nature in problem-solving and emotional fulfilment ("The hills are alive with the sound of music").