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Carrie Underwood to star in new "Sound of Music" broadcast

Carrie Underwood accepts the award for favorite country album for "Blown Away" at the 40th American Music Awards in Los Angeles, California,
Carrie Underwood accepts the award for favorite country album for "Blown Away" at the 40th American Music Awards in Los Angeles, California,

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Country singer Carrie Underwood will perform "My Favorite Things" and other tunes from the musical "The Sound of Music" when she portrays Maria von Trapp in a live broadcast of the perennial favorite, NBC television said on Friday.

In a production to be aired late next year, the five-time Grammy winner will star as the rebellious would-be nun who married Austrian Naval commander Georg von Trapp and fled the Nazis with him and his children. NBC did not say where the musical would be staged.

Julie Andrews immortalized the character of Maria in the 1965 Oscar-winning film that was based on the Rogers and Hammerstein musical, which premiered on Broadway in 1959. Both were based on the true story of the von Trapp family.

The musical was inspired by the 1956 German film "The Trapp Family" and its 1958 sequel, "The Trapp Family in America."

"Speaking for everyone at NBC, we couldn't be happier to have the gifted Carrie Underwood take up the mantle of the great Maria von Trapp," Robert Greenblatt, chairman of NBC Entertainment, said in a statement. "She was an iconic woman who will now be played by an iconic artist."

The musical's famous songs include "Do-Re-Mi," "Edelweiss," and "Climb Ev'ry Mountain."

The productions were based on Maria von Trapp's 1949 memoir, "The Story of the Trapp Family Singers," which recounts the family's performing years, their escape from Nazi-occupied Austria and their immigration to the United States. Maria died in 1987.

NBC's broadcast will be produced by Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, who produced the network's musical drama "Smash."

Underwood rose to fame after winning Fox network's musical talent contest "American Idol" in 2005. She made her film debut in 2011's "Soul Surfer." Some 15 million of her albums have been sold and her 2005 debut, "Some Hearts", was voted the top country album of the past decade by Billboard.

(Reporting by Eric Kelsey; Editing by Jill Serjeant)

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