The Sound of Music

America's favorite sing-along!

The final collaboration between Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein was destined to become the world's most beloved musical

When a postulant proves too high-spirited for the religious life, she is dispatched to serve as governess for the seven children of a widowed naval Captain. Her growing rapport with the youngsters, coupled with her generosity of spirit, gradually captures the heart of the stern Captain, and they marry.

Upon returning from their honeymoon they discover that Austria has been invaded by the Nazis, who demand the Captain's immediate service in their navy. The family's narrow escape over the mountains to Switzerland on the eve of World War II provides one of the most thrilling and inspirational finales ever presented in the theatre—and the motion picture version remains the most popular movie musical of all time.

THE SOUND OF MUSIC is presented through special arrangement with R&H Theatricals

The hills ARE alive!

Dock Theater’s production of one of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s most beloved musicals drew new power and significance from current events.

From the Director

The Power of Music...and Love

Thank you for attending Dock Mennonite Academy’s 2018 production of The Sound of Music! We were excited to retell this iconic story of music, resiliency, and the power of love over hate. 

From the opening we experience the power of music to bring joy and the strength of the mountains that resonate with it. Music reawakens the Captain’s heart from his grief, freeing him to feel joy and love from his children once again. This same music gives Maria the strength to journey from her monastic family to the Family von Trapp, searching for how best to use her gifts to bring love to the world. And it is this love that, when faced with the choice of paths in Act II, emboldens the Captain to choose what is right over what is easy. 

This story is set in the spring, 1938. It is a particular moment in history, just as Nazi Germany takes over Austria. And it is being performed now, in this particular moment in history, less than two weeks after yet another mass killing. This time in a synagogue, at a bris, a family celebration of new life. Although the words “hate” and “antisemitism” are not heard in the show, we cannot see what Brigitta calls “the flag with the black spider on it,” without shuddering at the power of the hate behind it. 

In the face of so much hate, we can’t just ask ourselves ‘Would we have had the strength to resist hate?’ But “Do we have the strength to resist hate?' Not ‘How would we have made others safe’, but ‘How do we make others safe?’ Are we bold enough to believe in a world where no one is afraid? Where no one need flee for safety? 

There is power in music to bring joy and speak truth. There is strength in the mountains to ring with that music whenever we need to hear it. Will we let it make us bold?  

Let us lift up our eyes to the hills. From there our help comes.

The promise of Hope. The power of Story. The work of the Kingdom.  

Karen Johnston

Cast List

Maria Rainer  Alexa Kennel

The Mother Abbess  Olivia Celenza

Sister Berthe, Mistress of the Novices  Ruth Michel

Sister Margaretta, Mistress of Postulants  Natalie Frank

Sister Sophia  Mikayla Martin

Captain Georg von Trapp  Miguel Santiago

Franz, the butler  Benjamin Longacre

Frau Schmidt, the housekeeper  Bryanna Dix

Liesl  Greta Schrag

Friedrich  Ivan Dean

Louisa  Kaitlyn Good

Kurt  Christopher Moore

Brigitta  Mia Kuhn

Marta  Belyse Landis

Gretl  Avery Goldcamp

Rolf Gruber  David Michel

Elsa Schraeder  Hannah Landis

Ursala  Abigail Delp

Max Detweiler Ben Graham

Herr Zeller  Songheon Kang

Baron Elberfeld  Kail McHugh

A New Postulant  Emma Robb

Admiral von Schreiber  Ben Anderson

Nuns of Nonberg Abbey

Isabel Bergin, Abigail Delp, Bryanna Dix, Eliana Farmer, Summer Hondrus, Belle Ragazzo, Emma Robb, Cassidy Williams, Savannah Youssef

Party Guests

Christine Hu, Elle Loux, Emma Rose Thompson

The Cast

Alexa Kennel

Maria Rainer

Miguel Santiago

Captain Georg von Trapp

Greta Schrag


Ivan Dean


Kaitlyn Good


Christopher Moore


Belyse Landis


Mia Kuhn


Avery Goldkamp


Ben Graham

Max Detweiler

SongHeon Kang

Herr Zeller

Hannah Landis

Elsa Schraeder

Ben Anderson

Admiral von Schreiber

Olivia Celenza

The Mother Abbess

Mikayla Martin

Sister Sophia

Ruth Michel

Sister Berthe

Mistress of the Novices

Natalie Frank

Sister Margaretta

Mistress of Postulants

Kail McHugh

Baron Elberfeld

Isabel Bergin

Baroness Elberfeld

Emma Robb

A New Postulant

David Michel

Rolf Gruber

Ben Longacre

Franz, the Butler

Bryanna Dix

Frau Schmidt, the Housekeeper

Emma Rose Thompson

Fraulein Schweiger

The Nuns of Nonberg Abbey

1st row: Natalie Frank, Mikayla Martin, Eliana Farmer, Emma Robb, Savannah Youssef.
2nd row: Olivia Celenza, Cassidy Williams, Ruth Michel, Isabel Bergin.
3rd row: Abigail Delp, Belle Ragazzo, Bryanna Dix.

The Directors

Karen Johnston


Rodney Derstine

Music Director


Jean Mong


Patti Guttenplan


Kathy Kennel

Theater Coordinator

Darwin Zehr

Tech Director

Cappies Reviews

Dock Theater participates in the Greater Philadelphia Area Cappie Awards, a program which celebrates high school theater and  encourages students to see and review other school's productions. The Cappies also has an awards program for productions and individual performers as judged by their peers. The Sound of Music was reviewed by students from other schools, and here are some of their comments:

Ke Ran (Lavender) Huang

The Baldwin School

Dock Mennonite Academy's overall production was an excellent success, animated with the talented actors and delightful songs. The production delivers clear themes of the musical; while Act One is filled with the dazzling tunes of love, Act Two explores the deeper insight of hatred. Although there was some uneven acting, it was easily overlooked with the captivating music and the exploration of a broader theme.
The lead actors energized the atmosphere and were immediately the focal point of the musical. Alexa Kennel as Maria Rainer was especially remarkable...

Johanna Fitzgerald

Delaware County Christian School

"There is power in music to bring joy and speak truth. There is strength in the mountains to ring with that music whenever we need to hear it. Will we be emboldened?" asked the director of Dock Mennonite Academy's musical The Sound of Music before the production began. Amidst much hate in the world today, Dock Mennonite Academy brought a ray of sunshine and a spark of hope with their production. The cast and crew delivered a musical with love and hope at its core, reminding the audience that music is powerful and love trumps hate.

Maria Englert

Archbishop John Carroll High School

From the opening of this show, the mountains were strengthened with the power of voice and joyous music at Dock Mennonite Academy in their production of The Sound of Music.
The production was altogether executed pleasantly and attractively and featured indisputably arduous vocal pieces. The show had particularly captivating emotion and satisfactory energy.  

Anna Davis

Archbishop John Carroll High School

Dock Mennonite Academy's heartfelt performance of The Sound of Music retells the famous story of Maria Rainer and the Von Trapp family. This production overall did a fantastic job of conveying the story and making it believable to the audience. Though the cast was small, they delivered...

Jess Flores

Archbishop John Carroll High School 

The overall production of The Sound of Music was great!  There was nice emotion on stage throughout the performance and a good sense of community between the cast.  

Linda Hansen

Delaware County Christian School

Many talented students brought this show together. From the beginning, the audience is greeted with the amazing vocal talents within the Nuns of Nonnberg Abbey. In particular, Sister Berthe, played by Ruth Michel, carried the song Maria along gracefully with her pitch-perfect vocal performance.

The hardworking crew ran the show smoothly and efficiently, which was not an easy feat considering the long run time of the production. It was clear to see that this show was able to be run so well because everyone involved in it was working hard and had passion for what they were doing. 

Ryan Schaafsma

delaware county christian School

Dock Mennonite's wonderful production of The Sound of Music directed by Ms. Karen Johnston was a work of genuine, light-hearted fun. The sense of comedy mixed with perplexing love not only made for a production full of laughs but more importantly one deeply embedded with heartfelt emotions. Whether a Nonnberg Nun was in focused character, a von Trapp child was fixed and ready for their next cue, or a lead role was filling their lines and songs with passion that exhibited their hard work and dedication, Dock's energy, creativity, and precision were visible.

Julia Dani

Friends' Central School

Dock Mennonite stayed true to the classic feel of The Sound of Music, and took us on a journey through the mountains with Maria with their well rehearsed musical numbers. 
The ever-genuine Maria was played nicely by Alexa Kennel. She valiantly took on the role and kept her head held high till the curtain finally fell. Kennels sweet performance of "A Lonely Goatherd" brought smiles to the faces of the audience as she showed off her yodeling skills. The stoic Captain von Trapp was finely played by Miguel Santiago. Santiago took on the Captain's stone cold characteristics and captured audience hearts with his final song, "Edelweiss." True to their characters, the leads admirably brought both love and heartbreak.

Lisa Green

Friends' Central School

The supporting cast in this production truly stood out. Ben Graham's portrayal of Max Detweiler, the captain's right-hand man, particularly his comedic timing, had the audience in stitches. Likewise, Hannah Landis utilized the few comedic lines she was given, and made the role of Elsa Schraeder, Captain Von Trapp's former fiancee, a hysterical one. Furthermore, while some numbers contained errors in pitch, Olivia Celenza's compelling portrayal of the Mother Abbess, coupled with her beautiful voice, made "Climb Every Mountain" a showstopper.

Aiden Kaliner

Harriton High School

From the beginning, the ensemble of nuns commanded the show through their strong vocals and energetic harmonies.  The nuns portrayed the time era and significance of the events magnificently, but as the show continued, some harmonizations became a challenge.  With the help of the younger children in the cast, the show still possessed its lovable curiosity and lightheartedness. 

Benna Trachtenberg

Harriton High School

The cast brought an unmatchable energy to this challenging production. Their vocal abilities were impressive, especially as many of the roles in The Sound of Music are extremely intense. Additionally, their maturity was extremely evident as they tackled sensitive topics. The lights and stage management shined. Lighting provided effective transitions between day and night, while stage management held together all components for an overall nice show.

Jacob Newmark

Harriton High School

While the cast of The Sound of Music was somewhat small, the production's range of demanding roles had numerous powerful and heartfelt numbers. The overall energy of the cast may have begun low, such was easily forgotten during the whimsical number of "Do-Re-Mi". 
Leading this impressive cast was Alexa Kennel as Maria Rainer, whose vocal range in "The Lonely Goatherd" astonished the audience. Opposite her was the equally talented Miguel Santiago as Captain von Trapp. Through his performance one could see the dynamic evolution of the Captain from a stern father to a loving husband. The chemistry between Maria and the Captain satisfied the relationship craved by the audience.

Annajean Gionta

Haverford High School

Dock Mennonite Academy filled their auditorium with the echoing "Sound of Music" on Friday, November 9th! Through the storytelling abilities of the actors and the precision of the technical staff, the audience was reminded of the mountains that can be moved under the influence of music.

With all aspects of the production considered, Dock entertained their sold-out audience with a show that reminded us all of the power that music has.

Jack Drennen

Haverford High School

The hills were alive in Dock Mennonite Academy's production of The Sound of Music. From nun to nanny, Maria brought the sound of music to all.

The Sound of Music is a lengthy show with many songs, and Dock Mennonite Academy took to the task well. The underlying themes have many heartbreaking real connections to current American society that challenge performers and audience members alike. Despite these adversities, the whole cast admirably touched on the issues of hate.

Liz Joslin

Haverford High School

Dock's performance was charming. The Sound of Music as a whole is no small feat for a high school, and the cast's hard work was admirable. The show was filled with a good amount of character and was consistent in energy. A touching message of love, as well as an appreciation for music,  was amplified by each actor on stage. 
Noteworthy was the hilarious Ben Graham in his role as Max Detweiler. From the moment he took the stage, he had the audience captivated and highly entertained. He was matched in energy by the graceful Hannah Landis in her role as Elsa Schraeder.

Mable Peach

Haverford High School

Demanding maturity from its cast, The Sound of Music is difficult for performers of any age to take on, but Dock Mennonite Academy presented an engaging show. The actors tactfully displayed the musical's difficult themes, while still communicating the gravity of its central message. 
Alexa Kennel's portrayal of Maria Rainer brought smiles to audience members; the character's ebullience was embodied in her elocution and vibrant spirit. In a vocally challenging role, Kennel did well to maintain vocal stamina and consistency throughout the show. Most notably, her talent shone through in "The Lonely Goatherd," as she yodeled with precise skill. In the role of Captain Georg Von Trapp, Miguel Santiago clearly exhibited the juxtaposition of Maria and the Captain's personalities. Santiago's austerity contrasted with Kennel's vivacity, creating an engrossing, dynamic relationship between the two from the beginning of the show.

Tommy Barnes

Haverford High School

Dock Mennonite High Academy performed a praiseworthy production of this nearly three-hour production filled with 20 scenes and 25 songs! A show this large of a task is a feat for any high school, and Dock Mennonite successfully maintained the audience's attention and focus throughout the course of the show.  The cast did a fine job at exciting the audience during high-energy numbers like "Lonely Goatherd" and "So Long Farewell".  
With such strong and defined characters that have been numerously played before this production, the actors of Dock Mennonite successfully performed these iconic roles in distinct fashions.