Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2020-05-27
About WCMG Publications News  Entertainment Features Donate Bars & Clubs Calendar Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage



NUNN ON ONE: THEATER The hills are alive with Christopher Carl
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Jerry Nunn, Windy City Times

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

The classic musical The Sound of Music is returning to Chicago on tour this time directed by three time Tony Award winner Jack O'Brien. The story of the von Trapp family continues to be a favorite thing for generation after generation. Set in Salzburg, Austria, right before World War II, Maria Rainer is sent to live with as a governess for a large family. A love story unfolds with classic songs such as "Edelweiss" and "Do-Re-Mi."

Christopher Carl plays Admiral von Schreiber in this production, along with understudying for Captain George von Trapp and Max. His background consists of some Broadway hits such as Tarzan, South Pacific, and Mamma Mia! No stranger to tour he has been seen in The Phantom of the Opera, Camelot, My Fail Lady, and South Pacific.

Windy City Times: Hi, Christopher. You are currently in New York?

Christopher Carl: Yes, but I am originally from Indiana, not too far from Fort Wayne, in Huntington. I was Dan Quayle paperboy back in the day!

I moved to New York in December of 1987 so it has almost been 30 years.

WCT: You have done a huge amount of work.

CC: I have been busy, knock on wood. I went to Ball State and was a secondary education major. I was thinking of doing teaching but once I started I realized the audiences weren't large enough or as attentive as I wanted them to be. [Laughs]

WCT: Talk about your character in The Sound of Music.

CC: I am playing Admiral von Schreiber, who really doesn't make an entrance until the very end of the show. I think it is more of an insurance policy because the ones that play the smaller adult roles play other parts. I am the Captain and Max cover, so I am a double cover. I'm an insurance policy that is wrapped into several different things.

WCT: So if anyone gets sick, then you are there for them?

CC: That's right, or if they take personal days or vacations, I am pushed right into the role. It is much less stressful if you see a vacation coming than getting a call an hour before finding I have to go on. I will change mode and the adrenalin is rushing. It is an interesting part of the career.

WCT: Is there differences in this Sound of Music from past productions?

CC: Jack O'Brien wanted to skew everything a bit younger. Kerstin Anderson plays Maria and just turned 21 as soon as we started the tour. Usually Marias have been older to the point where Mary Martin was in her '40s when she did it.

Jack angled it younger to have youthful energy in the show. It makes for a much less maternal Maria and more of a contemporary of Liesl.

WCT: There are not technically any gay characters in the Sound of Music?

CC: No, but Max is interesting because he is of a time period where if a man was not married by a certain age he was the confirmed old bachelor. I will say when I go on for Max I always approach it from the angle that he is gay.

When the Nazis come in, he is basically being questioned as to who he is and what is he doing there. There is a whole different angle if you play that as a gay character because his stakes are bumped up enormously when a Nazis is in his face wanting to know his name. Suddenly, it is a whole different ball of wax than just Uncle Max.

Until this day and age that couldn't be played as it is now because I think as audience members we are much more sensitive to that. It makes it a much more interesting character to play.

WCT: Did you see Carrie Underwood's version of Sound of Music on TV?

CC: I did and I will say this. It brought a whole new generation of people into the realm of loving theater. Everything has its faults but if it developed any kind of love of theater then it was successful.

WCT: Audiences may have not known who Audra McDonald, who played Mother Abbess, was before that.

CC: Exactly. She is a household name in the theater community but she branched out and became something much bigger.

WCT: There was Gaga's rendition of Sound's songs also.

CC: Yes, when she did the Academy Awards montage. We are putting Rodgers and Hammerstein back into the common vernacular.

WCT: Your resume has lots of classic musicals in it.

CC: Yes, and it is interesting to see how how theater is morphing a bit. I have had to add things into my audition book that when I started I would never have had to have a pop rock song in my repertoire. Theater has morphed to keep up with society. Look at Hamilton, 20 years ago that never would have been on Broadway. Now it is the toast of the season. You have to give the public what they want.

Luckily there are people who love the old classics because that is my meat and potatoes. Give me a bouncy C and fun lyric and I am ready to go. Ask me to rap and I will fall apart right in front of your eyes!

WCT: Do you like all the traveling, with being on tour?

CC: I have grown accustomed to it. I have been doing it for a couple of decades. I am either on the road or doing summer stock that takes me out of town. It is a great way to see the country and get paid. Touring and traveling for me can be very exciting.

As long as I have been in this career, I have never played Chicago. I have always joined a company that has left or I left before I played Chicago. Even when I was in Chicago the Musical they had already played Chicago by the time I joined. It is ironic that I am from a place that is so close to Chicago. I am really looking forward to being there. I wish it were longer. Two weeks is not enough!

The Sound of Music plays June 7-19 at the Cadillac Palace Theatre, 151 W. Randolph St. Visit or call 800-775-2000.

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


Gay News

Chita: A Legendary Celebration to stream May 29 2020-05-27 - Chita: A Legendary Celebration , Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS' one-night-only evening of song and dance celebrating the legendary Chita Rivera , returns this ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ Rufus Wainwright, LGBTQ films, Billy Porter, Janelle Monae 2020-05-27 - Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright unveiled the latest single from his eagerly anticipated new pop album, Unfollow the Rules, a press release noted. "Alone ...

Gay News

THEATER Pride in Place Festival brings LGBTQ theater to stay-at-home audiences 2020-05-26 - The upheaval of the Stonewall riots had barely settled before the weekend preceding Independence Day was set aside to honor the right of ...

Gay News

BAMtheatre starting virtual classes 2020-05-26 - In response to the stay-at-home and social distancing orders implemented by the COVID-19 pandemic, BAMtheatre has reimagined its musical theatre-focused programming through a ...

Gay News

Steppenwolf names first woman Executive Director 2020-05-22 - Steppenwolf Theatre Company announced that Brooke Flanagan—who previously worked at Steppenwolf for seven years—will return to the organization in the role of executive ...

Gay News

STREAMING THEATER REVIEW To Master the Art 2020-05-22 - Playwright: William Brown and Doug Frew. At: TimeLine Theatre, streaming. Tickets:; $15-$25. Runs through: June 7 TimeLine Theatre commissioned To ...

Gay News

STREAMING THEATER REVIEW School Girls; Or The African Mean Girls Play 2020-05-22 - Playwright: Jocelyn Bioh At: Goodman Theatre online at Tickets: $20. Runs through: May 31 Ranking in popularity on the list of ...

Gay News

STREAMING THEATER REVIEW The Happiest Place on Earth 2020-05-21 - Playwright: Philip Dawkins At: Sideshow Theatre online. Tickets:; $5+ ( pay what you can ). Runs through: Open run Playwright Philip ...

Gay News

Broadway In Chicago reschedules 'Frozen' 2020-05-21 - In response to the COVID-19 ( coronavirus ) pandemic, Broadway In Chicago announced that the upcoming engagement of Disney's Frozen—originally scheduled to run ...

Gay News

'SapphFest' to take place virtually May 28-29 2020-05-21 - On May 28-29 at 7:30 p.m., Violet Surprise Theatre will present SapphFest—a digital variety show celebrating queer women and non-binary artists from all ...


Copyright © 2020 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.







About WCMG Publications News  Entertainment Features Donate Bars & Clubs Calendar Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.