Album: The Sound of Music Soundtrack (1959)


  • This song comes from the 1959 Broadway musical The Sound Of Music, which was made into a popular film in 1965. In the play, Captain Von Trapp uses it to describe the way he feels about his love for Austria that is slowly dying away due to the Nazis and the Third Reich. The song was written by the show's composers, Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein. The movie version of The Sound Of Music featured the song twice, and Christopher Plummer's performance of this song as the Captain was so convincing, that many viewers assumed "Edelweiss" was a traditional song of Austria rather than the creation of two American songwriters.

    Viewers also had no idea that it's wasn't Plummer's voice on the song. The plan was to have him sing, but despite lessons he took before filming, his singing voice proved far from film quality (especially when juxtaposed with Julie Andrews) and a professional singer named Bill Lee was brought in to overdub his singing parts. Plummer explains in his autobiography that he was terrified when they brought him into a studio to record the song, and that Julie Andrews held his hand to try and settle him. Plummer learned that singing is very different than acting.
  • Edelweiss is a mountain flower, and the official flower of Switzerland. In the film version of the movie, the youngest Von Trapp child presents some Edelweiss to her father's mistress, the Baroness Schraeder.
  • This song was the last lyric Oscar Hammerstein published. He died of stomach cancer in 1960, shortly after The Sound of Music opened on Broadway.

Comments: 10

  • Thyrocyte from Bangkok, ThailandAlthough I am not a European resident and I have ever visited Austria only once, I still would like to leave my comment on this song.

    It has been one of my favorite songs since I heard it many decades ago when I was just a child. Its melody and rhythm is decent. Its lyric is sweet although I previously wrongly assumed that the part: Small and white, clean and bright you look happy to meet me.. might refer to a girl.

    Definitely, this is not Austria national anthem because its lyric is not Austria-German or Austro-Bavarian. So, it is clearly just an English or American nice song produced for The Sound of Music.
  • Paul from Eau Claire, WiMy good God, mein Gott, people will believe anything they see in the stupid movies. Sound of Music is not a stupid movie, unfortunately, leider, it was seen by countless millions of stupid people who actually believe that Edelweiss is a real Austrian, Oesterreiches, song. It is a very well-written piece of very good American music written by Rodgers and Hammerstein with absolutely no connection to Austria, Salzburg or for that matter the Nazis. Still dumb enough to believe? Wahnsinn!
  • Chomper from Franjkin County, PaAccording to the book written by Maria Augusta van Trapp , the family fled from the annexation of Austria by Nazi Germany and ended up in Vermont in 1942 . In 1950 , a 27 - room ski lodge was opened in Stowe , Vermont . The lodge was destroyed by a fire , on December 20 , 1980 , that forced 45 people , including Baroness Maria von Trapp , to flee in their nightclothes . The body of Ronald Becker , 30 years old , of Salem , Illinois , a guest , was found in the rubble . In 1983 , a new , Austrian style lodge with 93 rooms was opened . By the time Maria von Trapp died in 1987 , 32 family members owned stock in the lodge . Johannes von Trapp bought their shares in 1994 and resolved all family lawsuits in 1999 . The Trapp Family Lodge added 23 rooms and 100 guesthouses ( guesthouses available through Timeshare only ). The Lodge has a gym , tennis courts and sleigh rides . It has a restaurant,and access to skiing , maple sugaring , the Stowe Recreation Path , and downtown Stowe .
  • Chomper from Franjkin County, PaThis song is indeed about a small white flower that grows on the alpine hills of Austria and Switzerland . It is a very popular song , and has been sung in English and German . My dad has a round - wheel tape that he used to play on a tape player ( that took these round wheel tapes ); and this song ws sung in German by a German singing group ( not the original von Trapp Family ). I enjoy the english and German verse ..It is so beautiful .
  • Harold from San Bernadino, CaFirst movie i ever saw at a movie theatre, summer 1965--------have loved it ever since.
  • Kristen from Aurora, IlThis song is not an Austrian love song. When Christopher Plummer sang it in the Movie at the festival and invited everyone to join in he was greeted with silence because no one had heard of this. This song is in English not in German which is the official language in Austria.
    I love the song of music so don't think I am a hater. I am studying in Vienna and I went to Salzburg and went on a Sound of Music tour.

    Edelweiss is a small white flower that grows in to the top of the Alps. Men would climb to the top to get the flower to court women. It proved that they were brave.
  • Pete from Nowra, Australiasomeone pass me a tissue
  • Craig from Brooklyn, NyThe melody was by Richard Rodgers, the lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein, written for the original Broadway musical version of The Sound of Music. That Edelweiss sounds like it could be some old folk songs shows the genius of the songwriters. It was, in fact, the last song the two wrote together; Hammerstein died not long after.

    The Captain Von Trapp character was first played on the stage by Theodore Bikel, who himself was born in Austria and emigrated at the dawn of World War II. Thus, his rendition of Edelweiss is probably quite heartfelt. The original stage version of the play is available on CD; it has great song material that was inexplicably left out of the film.
  • Rosario from Buenos Aires, United StatesLOVE THIS SONG...
  • Stefanie from Rock Hill, ScI thought I heard somewhere that this is actually the Austrian national anthem. It's a great song, and since my grandmother was born and raised in Switzerland, it's a well-known one in out family. Adelweiss flowers grow inSwitzerland too. They're very small flowers.
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