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The 'Burg is alive with 'The Sound of Music'
Portraits of Riverside's "Sound of Music" child actors

 Riverside Center's production of 'The Sound of Music' features two casts of children. One group includes (from left) Annalese Fusaro, Caroline Mork, Joshua Otten, Nick Kahane, Jillian Brence, Caroline Griswold and Rhianna DeGeorge.
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Date published: 10/19/2012

The hills are alive with the sound of music--and for the next 2 months, so is the Fredericksburg region.

The beloved Tony Award-winning musical "The Sound of Music" opens at Riverside Center Dinner Theater on Saturday, Oct. 20, and runs through Jan. 6.

About 120 young people auditioned for the coveted roles of the charming von Trapp children. Fourteen youngsters, divided into two casts, were chosen.

--Bridget Balch

EVELYN GANSLER, 5

Character: Gretl School: Rocky Run Elementary kindergartner Favorite song from musical: "Do-Re-Mi"

RHIANNA DeGEORGE, 8

Character: Gretl School: Battlefield Elementary third-grader

Favorite song from musical: "Edelweiss" Why did you audition? "I really, really like acting, and I thought Riverside was the best place to do it. I actually complain when there's no rehearsal."

ALEXA NORBECK, 10

Character: Marta School: Brock Road Elementary fifth-grader

Favorite song from musical: "Do-Re-Mi" Why did you audition? "I love the movie, and my two favorite characters were Brigitta and Marta, and they're my age." Alexa has been in several plays before, including "Annie," "101 Dalmatians," "Alice in Wonderland," "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" and "Cinderella."

JILLIAN BRENCE, 10

Character: Marta School: Rockhill Elementary fifth-grader

Favorite song from musical: "So Long, Farewell" Why did you audition? "I'm really into acting. This is my first show, but I've been wanting to act for years."

ANNALESE FUSARO, 10

Character: Brigitta School: Wilderness Elementary fifth-grader

Favorite song from musical: "So Long, Farewell" Why did you audition? "I already did the show with CYT [Christian Youth Theater], and I thought it would be fun [to be in it again]."

Annalese has acted in several plays, including "A Little Princess" with the Christian Youth Theater and "White Christmas" at Riverside.

ABIGAYLE ANDERSON, 11

Character: Brigitta School: Gayle Middle School sixth-grader

Favorite song from musical: "Do-Re-Mi" What's your favorite part about being on stage? "Getting to make people laugh and smile--it's just really fun."

Abigayle has been in several Riverside shows, including "White Christmas," "Hello, Dolly!" and "Annie."

JOSHUA OTTEN, 11

Character: Kurt School: Home-schooled sixth-grader in Fauquier

Favorite song from musical: "The Sound of Music" What's your favorite part of acting? "It's fun to be the character. It's an experience not many people have outside of the theater--you get to be someone else."

Joshua has acted in other Riverside plays, including playing Charlie in "Willy Wonka Jr."


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"The Sound of Music" runs from Oct. 20 through Jan. 6 at Riverside Center Dinner Theater, 95 Riverside Parkway in Stafford. Shows include Wednesday and Sunday matinees as well as evening productions on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

Tickets range from $20 to $60, and some include a meal. For more information, call 540/370-4300 or visit riversidedt.com.