Study Guide

The Sound of Music Summary

The Sound of Music Summary

Let's start at the very beginning (a very good place to start). As you read through the summary, just picture people busting out into song every few minutes. Believe us, it's more fun that way.

The camera soars over the Austrian Alps. There's a woman happily twirling and singing. It's Mary Poppins.

Oops, our mistake. Not Mary Poppins. Let's rewind.

The twirling and singing woman is Maria, a young woman studying to become a nun in an abbey in Salzburg. Unfortunately, her general zest for life is getting in the way of her spiritual duties, so the Reverend Mother (head honcho of the abbey) suggests that she try something else for a while. Her plan: send Maria to live with widower Georg von Trapp, a navy captain who desperately needs help with his seven children. Since his wife's death, the cap'n runs his house like a ship, calling the children with a ship's whistle and insisting on absolute order and control.

No. Fun. Allowed.


The kids don't make things easy for Maria at first. They've managed to send dozens of governesses packing with their pranks and misbehavior. But that night, a thunderstorm drives them all into Maria's room; the children realize that Maria is buckets of fun and very motherly. The captain goes away to Vienna, and the kids and Maria end up running around Salzburg singing, dancing, climbing trees, and just generally having the kind of fun that their super-stern dad doesn't permit.

Coming home from Vienna to find the kids and Maria soaking wet and having absolutely too much fun after a boating adventure, the captain fires her. Enter the sound of music to save the day: he overhears the children singing a song that Maria's taught them and he's overwhelmed with emotion. He's not an ice-cold creep after all; he used to sing all the time before his wife died. He tells Maria she's brought joy back to the house and begs her to stay.

The captain lightens up and gets closer to his children. There's a minor complication at this point, though: Maria and the captain develop feelings for each other although neither of them really know it yet. And the captain's already dating the lovely and sophisticated Baroness Schraeder.

The baroness tries to remove the third side of the love triangle by making Maria aware of the captain's feelings for her, which mortifies Maria and sends her fleeing back to the abbey without so much as a goodbye to the children. The captain and the baroness get engaged. The kids are not all right.

After the children show up at the abbey looking for their gone governess, the Reverend Mother susses out what's happened and sends Maria back to the von Trapps. She won't let Maria run away from her feelings. Maria thinks she's off the hook when she learns that the captain and the baroness are engaged, but the baroness breaks off the engagement pretty soon after Maria's return. She's no dummy; she sees how the captain is feeling about Maria. With the baroness out of the way, Maria and Georg confess their love and get hitched.

The captain and Maria return from their honeymoon to find that Germany has annexed Austria. We hate when that happens. There's a telegram demanding that Captain von Trapp take a post with the German navy and hang Nazi flags in his house. Since Georg hates the Nazis and the occupation, he decides that he and the family need to get out of the country ASAP.

Their plan hits a snag when Nazi Party leader Herr Zeller catches them on their way out of town. They convince Zeller that they're just on their way to sing in a folk festival that's going on that night. He's suspicious, but lets them go as long as he escorts them there. He believes that allowing them to sing will show the Austrian audience that life in their country goes on as usual. See? The Nazis are warm and fuzzy music lovers.


The Von Trapp Family Singers are crushing it at the Festival. But just before the awards presentation, they sneak out; the nuns hide them in the abbey. After a near-catastrophe with the Nazis, they jump in their car, head to the Swiss border, and begin their climb through the Alps to freedom.

And that's that. So long, farewell, auf Wiedersehen, goodnight.

  • Scene 1

    Scene 1

    • We open up with a shot of the clouds—like, for real, the camera is in the clouds (in a helicopter). The camera then zooms over the hills, and we get some to-die-for aerial shots of the Alps. Finally, the camera tracks in on a woman in the distance.
    • She's singing the title song while dancing around the hills. Apparently, she goes to the hills when her heart is lonely and listens to the sound of music.
    • Suddenly, she hears bells in the distance and realizes there's somewhere she needs to be. She grabs her coat off the ground and runs off.
    • Then we get the titles, laid over shots of Salzburg, Austria, in the "last golden days of the '30s."
    • Uh oh.
  • Scene 2

    Scene 2

    • Inside an abbey, a group of nuns are singing on their way to vespers. We watch the nuns worshipping. It's all very solemn.
  • Scene 3

    Scene 3

    • After the service, Sister Bernice runs up to tell the Reverend Mother, Sister Bertha, and Sister Margareta that someone named Sister Maria is missing.
    • The trio goes to another group of nuns and asks what they think of Maria. It seems that Maria is delightful, but kind of a pain/irresponsible and "not an asset to the abbey."
    • They launch into cheerful song wondering how to solve a problem like Maria.
    • As they're finishing up the song, the woman from the hilltop, who seems to be this Sister Maria, comes rushing in.
    • When she sees the other nuns, she slows down and walks away.
    • Late. Again.
  • Scene 4

    Scene 4

    • Now fully in her postulant's garb, Maria goes in to see Reverend Mother.
    • She's very apologetic about being absent, explaining that she couldn't help herself—the sky was so blue, yadda yadda, and she just had to get out and be a part of it.
    • She says that can't stop singing or saying whatever she feels.
    • Reverend Mother remarks that some people would call that "honesty." We like this Reverend Mother already.
    • Reverend Mother says it's the will of God that she leave the abbey, if only for a little while. She's thinking the religious life might not be the best career move for Maria.
    • Maria's not happy, but she ultimately accepts the decision. She's not about to argue with God's will.
    • Reverend Mother is sending her to be a governess to a widower with seven children. Seven children? Yikes.
  • Scene 5

    Scene 5

    • Maria leaves the abbey. She's kind of nervous, but ultimately she decides she's going to embrace the opportunity with confidence. Cue the next musical number, "I Have Confidence."
    • She walks through Salzburg and rides the bus to the von Trapp house, singing all the way to hype herself up.
    • She opens the gate and enters the grounds, trying to convince herself she's up to the job.
    • She rings the doorbell.
  • Scene 6

    Scene 6

    • The butler takes Maria into the hall. He disappears to go get the captain, and Maria takes the opportunity to snoop around.
    • She opens one of the doors to peek into the house's ballroom. She starts dancing… until the captain appears in the doorway.
    • He very sternly tells her that some rooms are not to be disturbed.
    • Maria and the Captain start to get acquainted out in the hall. It doesn't go so well. The captain doesn't like her dress.
    • Maria learns she's the 12th governess the children have had. The last one only stayed 2 hours.
    • She wants to know what's wrong with the children. The captain claims there's nothing wrong with the children… only the governesses. That makes sense.
    • He gives her the rundown on the house rules, and it sounds like he runs a very tight ship.
    • He blows a whistle, and suddenly the children appear at the top of the stairs and march down. They're all dressed in identical-ish sailor outfits.
    • He introduces each of the children to Maria. They each have their own personal whistle signal.
    • He tries to get Maria to use the whistle, but she balks. Then he tries to assign her a whistle signal, and she absolutely refuses. Whistles are for dogs, not people. Bold move, Maria.
    • When the captain asks if she was this much trouble at the abbey, she says, "Oh, no, much more."
    • The captain leaves, and Maria tries to get to know the kids.
    • She makes the mistake of telling them she hasn't been a governess before; the kids exchange mischievous looks.
    • They give her all kinds of bogus advice that's sure to get her in trouble.
    • Gretl, the youngest, tells her to ignore it all, though, because she likes Maria right away. She hasn't learned how to be snarky yet.
    • Fraulein Schmidt enters and offers to show Maria to her room.
    • On her way upstairs, she finds a frog in the pocket of her dress.
  • Scene 7

    Scene 7

    • Maria's late to dinner. When she sits down, she discovers a pine cone on her chair.
    • She laughs loudly, but when the captain asks why she's reacted that way, she doesn't rat the children out, blaming her bizarre behavior on rheumatism.
    • Maria insists on saying grace, and she thanks the children for the "gift" they left in her pocket to make her feel so welcomed and at home.
    • The captain has no idea what she's talking about, but the kids feel horribly guilty for their prank; they start crying.
    • The captain's not sure why they're sobbing like crazy, but Maria shrugs it off, saying they're "just happy."
    • She's really a natural at this governess thing, just like Mary Poppins.
  • Scene 8

    Scene 8

    • A boy named Rolfe comes to the door with a telegram for the captain.
    • When Liesl, the captain's eldest child, learns it was Rolfe who delivered the telegram, she sneaks away to the gazebo, where Rolfe's waiting. They embrace. Apparently they're… friends.
    • In between their romantic chat, we learn that Austria's in transition—and Rolfe believes that Captain von Trapp is not on the "right" side of things. That is, he's not into the idea of Austrians becoming Germans.
    • Since Liesl is only "Sixteen Going On Seventeen," Rolfe sings her some advice about the grownup world. After all, he's seventeen going on eighteen.
    • Liesl seems to welcome the advice; she knows she's naïve. She needs a man to take care of her.
    • They move into the gazebo when it starts to rain.
    • At the end of the song, Rolfe kisses her. He leaves and she squeals with happiness.
  • Scene 9

    Scene 9

    • Back at the house, Maria's getting ready for bed. Frau Schmidt brings her some fabric for some new dresses. She's never seen such fancy stuff.
    • They talk about the Captain's upcoming trip to Vienna, where he'll see Baroness Schraeder.
    • Frau S. says that she thinks the captain and the baroness might be getting married.
    • Now Maria knows why God sent her to the von Trapp home: to help the children adjust to a new mother.
    • Maria kneels down for her prayers, as Liesl tries to sneak in the window behind her.
    • Liesl's soaked and asks Maria not to tell on her.
    • She cooks up a story about why she was out so late, but eventually she admits she wasn't just taking a walk alone.
    • Maria sends her into the bathroom with a spare nightgown and instructions to soak the dress in the tub. She's hoping they can have a chat about Liesl's nocturnal wanderings when she's through.
    • While Liesl's doing that, Gretl bursts in, scared by the storm.
    • Soon the other girls join, and Maria invites them to come hang out in bed. The boys follow shortly.
    • Maria sings to them about the stuff that makes her feel better when she's scared ("My Favorite Things").
    • While they're singing, Captain von Trapp appears and stops the singing in its tracks. The kids are supposed to be in bed.
    • Maria starts defending herself, but ultimately she sends them all back to bed.
    • The captain reminds her that the house is all about discipline. Peace out, captain.
    • Maria asks for more fabric for playclothes for the children, but he refuses.
    • She feels pretty down about it for a minute or two, before realizing she can turn her old curtains (which are about to be replaced) into outfits for the kids. She cheers right up.
  • Scene 10

    Scene 10

    • Cut to Maria with all the kids in outfits formerly known as curtains, running around Salzburg and having a blast. It's a goofy montage.
    • Fun fact: Tourists in Salzburg love to re-enact this scene.
  • Scene 11

    Scene 11

    • Maria and the children have a picnic in the hills, and Maria wants to teach them something to sing for the baroness.
    • She first she has to teach them how to sing, launching into the classic "Do-Re-Mi."
    • When you know the notes to sing, you can sing most anything.
    • Bet you already knew that.
  • Scene 12

    Scene 12

    • Cut to Maria and the kids on apparently a different day (they are wearing different clothes) practicing their new singing skills.
    • They continue singing all around Salzburg—walking, biking, riding. By the end of the day, they've got their scales down. By some epic coincidence, they're a very talented bunch of kids.
  • Scene 13

    Scene 13

    • The captain, the baroness, and Uncle Max are in the car on their way back to the von Trapp house.
    • In the distance, they can hear the monks singing. Max says he's looking for a singing group for the Salzburg Folk Festival.
    • As they're driving, they see a bunch of kids in trees. Captain von Trapp doesn't recognize them as his kids, saying they're just some "local urchins."
  • Scene 14

    Scene 14

    • Back at the house, the baroness is telling the captain how happy she is to be there.
    • We learn that the captain is different here—and he doesn't like it in Vienna with all the fancy parties and boring music.
    • They flirt for a while. The baroness brought some meaning back into his life, according to the captain.
    • Max comes out. Seems he lost out on another group for the music festival. He thought he could make some money as a music promoter.
    • Max jokes that he likes leeching off rich people like the captain and the baroness.
    • The captain goes inside, and Max pumps the baroness for information about when/whether they're getting married.
    • The baroness says that the captain is interested in getting married for sure, but maybe not to her. Max really wants them to get married. It would be great for him.
    • Rolfe shows up and starts throwing pebbles at Liesl's window, thinking he's alone.
    • Captain von Trapp comes out and asks what he's doing.
    • He gives Max a telegram and a "Heil Hitler" salute. The Captain does not like that—he's not a fan.
    • Max and the captain have a disagreement when Max basically says that "what's going to happen is going to happen," and the captain just needs to "make sure it doesn't happen" to him.
    • The captain loses his temper, warning Max never to say that again.
    • After Max leaves, the captain and the baroness talk about the situation in Austria. The captain's afraid that the world he knows is disappearing.
    • News flash: It is.
    • Suddenly there's a ruckus out on the river behind the house, and the kids and Maria appear in a boat.
    • They're laughing and giggling as Maria accidentally capsizes the boat while shouting her hellos to the captain. They all stumble out of the water, giggling hysterically.
    • The captain blows his whistle and the kids immediately stop laughing and hop into line.
    • The captain inspects them, then introduces the baroness to his children. This is not the kind of impression he was hoping they'd make on his girlfriend.
    • He orders them inside to change clothes. Maria starts to follow, but the captain orders her to stay.
    • The baroness excuses herself, sensing that things are about to get awkward.
    • The captain asks her if the children had been climbing trees, finally connecting the dots and realizing those tree "urchins" were his kids.
    • Yep.
    • To make matters worse, she reveals that the children are wearing her old curtains.
    • Maria tries to tell the captain about the kids—how they feel, what they need. You know, tons of stuff the captain doesn't want to hear.
    • Maria doesn't let him shut her up.
    • He tells her he wants her to pack her bags and return to the abbey.
    • Right then, he hears singing coming from inside the house. His eyes widen. Who's singing?
    • It's the children. Maria taught them a song to sing for the baroness. He rushes inside to listen.
    • After watching them for a minute or two, he joins them in a song. You've got to be kidding.
    • The still-drenched Maria shows up in the doorway and watches the scene with loving looks.
    • The captain casts a warm look towards Maria. Guess who notices? Hint: Baroness Schraeder.
    • After they're all done singing, the kids are astounded. Seems that they haven't heard their father sing in ages. Group hug.
    • Gretl gives a bunch of edelweiss to the baroness, who's charmed.
    • The captain turns around and sees Maria standing in the doorway, and she scurries away. He chases after her, apologizing for "behaving badly."
    • He admits she was right, and that he doesn't know his kids. She says there's still time.
    • He asks her to stay.
    • After he leaves, she jumps for joy and hurries up the stairs.
  • Scene 15

    Scene 15

    • Maria and the kids are having a puppet show and singing "The Lonely Goatherd" for an audience of the captain, the baroness, and Max. It's a big hit.
    • The puppet show set is a gift from Max. Totally thoughtful gift, right?
    • After the show, Max announces he's found his entry for the Salzburg Folk Festival: the von Trapp family.
    • Captain von Trapp—who hadn't heard about this scheme prior to this moment—puts his foot down. His family does not sing in public.
    • The kids vote on who gets to sing next, and they vote for the captain. He balks at first, but he finally agrees. He sings "Edelweiss."
    • The baroness has a great idea afterwards: he should fill the house with music and have a huge party to introduce her to all his friends.
  • Scene 16

    Scene 16

    • Sure enough, they have a ball (literally, a ball), and it looks like quite the rager. By 1930s Austrian standards, at least.
    • An unpleasant-looking man attends and gives the stink-eye to the Austrian flag in the hall.
    • The kids stand by the dance floor, watching. They start dancing together outside.
    • Maria starts to show them an Austrian folk dance, dancing with Kurt. The captain comes and cuts in.
    • The baroness finds them out there and watches Maria and the captain dance. She's not happy.
    • At the end, there's a moment where they look into each other's eyes and seem kind of shocked.
    • Maria blushes, and stammers that she doesn't know any more of the dance. The baroness tells them they make a lovely couple.
    • Maria scurries off with the children to prepare a surprise for the guests, which turns out to be a goodnight musical number ("So Long, Farewell").
    • After the music's over, Max tries to get Maria to join the party.
    • Maria balks, saying that she's not properly dressed. They'll wait for her to change.
    • The unpleasant man starts an argument with Captain von Trapp about the tension between Austria and Germany.
    • His name is Herr Zeller. His favorite color is black and his favorite dictator is Adolf Hitler.
  • Scene 17

    Scene 17

    • The baroness goes with Maria to her room to help her find something appropriate to wear to the party.
    • She sneakily strikes up a convo with Maria about how she knows Maria's in love with the captain and she thinks he's in love with her, too.
    • Maria looks horrified. She says she has to leave (presumably back to the abbey), if what the baroness is saying is true. She starts packing immediately.
    • The baroness offers to help, and Maria just asks that she not tell the captain what they talked about. No problem.
  • Scene 18

    Scene 18

    • Back at the party, the baroness grabs some champagne and toasts her success with Max in getting Maria out of the way.
    • She dances with the captain as Maria sneaks out of the house in the clothes she wore when she first arrived.
    • Maria leaves a note for the captain before taking one last look around and ducking out.
  • Scene 19

    Scene 19

    • Back at the von Trapps', the baroness is playing ball with the children outside.
    • It doesn't look like they're having a lot of fun; everyone is pretty subdued. The baroness is definitely not Mary Poppins. She can't throw or catch a ball to save her life.
    • Maybe she should take off the high heels.
    • Afterwards, the baroness joins Max on the deck for some lemonade.
    • Max jokes that she doesn't seem like the type to have seven children. The baroness gives it right back—hasn't he heard of a thing called "boarding school"?
    • Max tries to get the kids to sing, but their hearts aren't in it—they really miss their governess.
    • The captain joins them outside. Brigitta asks Captain von Trapp if it's true that Maria isn't coming back.
    • The kids have lots of follow-up questions, including who their new governess is going to be.
    • The captain announces that they aren't going to have a governess anymore—because they are going to have a new mother. He doesn't look 100% comfortable.
    • The captain tells the children that he and the baroness are going to be married. The captain says they are all going to be very happy. Uh-huh.
    • The kids don't look convinced, but they each dutifully give the baroness a kiss.
  • Scene 20

    Scene 20

    • The kids wander over to Maria's abbey to try to see her.
    • The nun who answers the bell allows them through the gate and asks them to wait.
    • Sister Margareta comes to greet them, but tells them it's not possible for them to see Maria because she's in seclusion.
    • Not like "Orange is the New Black" seclusion. This one's self-imposed.
    • Sister Margareta explains to Reverend Mother what happened with Maria, and they reflect on Maria's mental state since returning.
    • The Reverend Mother decides she must talk to her. She's left her alone too long.
  • Scene 21

    Scene 21

    • The Reverend Mother has Maria into her office and asks what happened with the von Trapps.
    • Maria said she was "confused," and she came back to the abbey to be safe.
    • The Reverend Mother eventually gets Maria to admit that the problem has something to do with Captain von Trapp and her feelings for him.
    • The Reverend Mother even seems delighted about the possibility.
    • Maria's distraught, and she wants to take her vows right this second.
    • The Reverend Mother says that the abbey isn't a place to hide from problems.
    • Maria has to figure out how God wants her to use her exceptional capacity for love—which means she needs to go back to the von Trapps.
    • She launches into "Climb Ev'ry Mountain." Maria has to climb her personal mountains to find her dream and her purpose.
  • Scene 22

    Scene 22

    • The captain is quizzing the kids on why they're late for dinner.
    • They make up a story about going berry picking and eating all of the berries.
    • Lame.
    • The captain sends them to bed without dinner. He knows they're lying.
    • The children start singing "My Favorite Things" to try to cheer themselves up. It's not working.
    • Suddenly, a familiar voice breaks in—it's Maria. The kids run up to hug her and they finish the song together.
    • They tell her that their father's going to be married. She's clearly shocked and disappointed, but covers it up. Not well, though.
    • The captain comes right out and tries to ask her why she left. She asks him not to ask.
    • The baroness comes out, and Maria congratulates them on their upcoming marriage.
    • The captain asks Maria if she's back to stay, and she says only until they can make arrangements for another governess.
  • Scene 23

    Scene 23

    • Maria's outside walking alone after dinner, and the captain watches her from the balcony.
    • The baroness comes outside and finds him gazing at Maria.
    • She tries to strike up a conversation with him, but his mind is somewhere else.
    • She starts chattering about what she wants to get him for a wedding present, where they should go on their honeymoon, etc.
    • He finally stops her, saying "It's no use."
    • He tries to go on, but the baroness stops him so she can break up with him first.
    • She says he might not be the man for her, because she needs someone who needs her (and her money) desperately.
    • She says she's going inside to pack and go back to Vienna, where she belongs. She remarks that somewhere out there in the night, there's a woman she suspects will never be a nun...
    • The captain looks surprised, as if he's just realizing something.
  • Scene 24

    Scene 24

    • The captain finds Maria sitting by the gazebo looking sad and pensive. He sits down next to her.
    • He asks her why she left, and then why she came back. She hedges.
    • He says he's hoping that she'll change her mind about leaving.
    • Maria responds that the baroness has things covered, and Georg breaks the news that "There isn't going to be any baroness." Since, you know, he's in love with someone else.
    • They look deeply into each other's eyes and kiss and embrace.
    • It's just so romantic we can't stand it.
    • Christopher Plummer and Julie Andrews couldn't stand it either. They kept laughing so much that the whole scene had to be shot in silhouette.
    • The captain declares his love for Maria, and then they break into song ("I Must Have Done Something Good").
    • The song is about how Maria thinks that the captain's love for her must be karma for some good things she's done in her life. Except she doesn't say "karma." She's Catholic.
    • Btw, this song was not in the original stage play. It was written just for the film.
    • They discuss whom the captain should ask for Maria's hand in marriage, other than the Reverend Mother.
    • Naturally, the answer is "the children."
  • Scene 25

    Scene 25

    • It's Maria and Georg's wedding day. We watch her walk down the aisle of the magnificent church in a fabulous gown to a rousing organ arrangement and people singing "Maria."
    • The captain, resplendent in his formal naval duds, waits for her. They join hands and ascend the altar.
    • Evidently, the "problem like Maria" has been solved. Love was the solution.
  • Scene 26

    Scene 26

    • The church bells pealing from the wedding transition into a more somber bell tolling in the background as Nazis march through Salzburg. Nazis. We hate those guys.
    • We see Herr Zeller getting out of a car and coming to talk to Max, who's practicing a musical number with Captain von Trapp's children.
    • Herr Zeller is kvetching about the fact that there was no Nazi flag outside the von Trapp house. He's remedied the situation.
    • Herr Zeller wants to know when Captain von Trapp will be home. Max indicates that the captain is on his honeymoon and they just don't know.
    • Apparently, the kids are going to be singing at the folk festival tonight.
    • Suddenly, Rolfe appears and shouts for Liesl.
    • Liesl tries to be friendly, asking why he hasn't been by lately, but he blows her off.
    • He says he has more important things to worry about than delivering telegrams to her door.
    • Ouch. Nazism is a real romance-killer.
    • He gives her a telegram from Berlin that she's to give to her father immediately upon his return.
    • When the kids and Max get home, they find that the captain and Maria have returned.
    • Georg's busy ripping down the Nazi flag that Zeller's henchmen apparently put up, and then they all have a happy reunion.
    • The captain informs Max that the kids will absolutely not be singing in the festival tonight.
    • Max and the captain start getting heated over Austrian politics, and Liesl remembers to give the captain the telegram.
    • Max pleads with Maria to influence the captain to at least pretend to cooperate with the Nazis, but Maria refuses to ask her husband to compromise his beliefs.
  • Scene 27

    Scene 27

    • Liesl asks Maria for some relationship advice, since she and Rolfe appear to be over.
    • Maria offers motherly advice in the form of a song. Things will work out for her; she just needs to not rush into things.
    • The captain interrupts them and sends Liesl out.
    • He shares the contents of the telegram. He's been "offered" a commission with the Nazis, and he has to report for duty the next day.
    • He knows it would be deadly for them to refuse, and he has no intention of joining them.
    • Maria says she knew this would happen, but didn't expect it would happen so soon.
    • The captain tells her to round up the kids and not tell them anything; they're going to leave Austria that very evening.
  • Scene 28

    Scene 28

    • It's nighttime, and the von Trapps plus Max are quietly pushing the car away from the house. The plan is to drive to Switzerland.
    • We see Franz watching them from the window. Will he rat them out?
    • As they pass the gates and are about to get in the car, some other cars suddenly turn on their headlights.
    • It's Herr Zeller and his Nazi buddies.
    • Zeller asks if there's something wrong with the captain's car.
    • The captain claims that his car wouldn't start, so a young Nazi assists them in starting it. There's no trouble, naturally, which makes the captain's story pretty suspicious.
    • Herr Zeller says that his orders are to take Captain von Trapp to his new post tonight, and the captain says that that's impossible. The entire family will be singing in the Salzburg Music Festival.
    • Herr Zeller doesn't quite seem to believe them (shocker), but he decides to let them stay and perform, and then he'll take Captain von Trapp to his new post.
    • Zeller sees the P.R. possibilities in letting the family sing. Everyone will see how nothing's changed in Austria. It's all good.
    • They get in their respective cars and go to the festival.
  • Scene 29

    Scene 29

    • As the von Trapps are onstage singing, the camera pans over all the uniformed Nazis guarding the festivities.
    • They're the only ones not enjoying the program. Guess they teach you not to smile in Nazi school.
    • The family finishes "Do-Re-Mi," and Captain von Trapp launches into "Edelweiss."
    • He motions for the audience to join in, which they enthusiastically do.
    • Except the Nazis. They're definitely not happy about it.
    • The captain's overcome with emotion halfway through, since he's singing about his homeland on the very evening he's leaving.
    • Maria and the kids come out and help him finish the song.
    • Max announces that the von Trapps will do an encore, and that this will be the last time the family will perform together for a while.
    • He explains that Captain von Trapp is being called up to serve with the Third Reich, and there are disapproving grumbles.
    • As he exits the stage, Max tells the family he thinks the plan will work, and that he'll miss them and the money he could've made off them.
    • The entire family performs "So Long, Farewell." Ironic, right?
    • Max then comes out to announce the winners of the festival.
    • 3rd and 2nd prize are announced, and the winners come out to accept.
    • He announces the first prize, which goes to the von Trapps. No one appears.
    • He announces it again. Still nobody.
    • Instead, a Nazi comes running in and says that the von Trapps are gone.
  • Scene 30

    Scene 30

    • The Nazis have arrived at the abbey where the von Trapps are hiding.
    • Reverend Mother moves the family through the abbey to a better hiding spot while another nun calmly answers the bell.
    • Herr Zeller and some Nazis storm in to search the abbey.
    • Meanwhile, Reverend Mother is hiding them in the graveyard behind some huge gravestones.
    • She tells them that the Germans have closed the borders.
    • New plan: drive to the border and walk over the mountains to Switzerland.
    • As they crouch in hiding, Gretl asks if they should sing, and Maria says absolutely not. She tries to keep everyone very, very quiet.
    • They cower behind gravestones protected by a locked gate as the Nazis come up there to search.
    • They shine their flashlights into the area where the von Trapps are hiding.
    • One group of Nazis leaves, but then another soldier comes up. It's Rolfe. Liesl gives a little gasp.
    • Rolfe hears it.
    • Rolfe catches them in his flashlight, and the captain sends the kids and Maria away as he confronts the boy.
    • Even though Rolfe threatens to kill him, von Trapp correctly guesses Rolfe won't shoot and manages to disarm him. Rolfe even looks despondent.
    • But when the captain says, "You'll never be one of them," Rolfe gets angry enough to shout to the others that he found the family.
    • The von Trapps escape in a car, and the Nazis go back to their own vehicles to give chase.
    • Their cars won't start. The nuns have removed the distributor wires. Yay, nuns.
    • They sheepishly admit their "sin" to the Reverend Mother. We're guessing she doesn't mind.
  • Scene 31

    Scene 31

    • In our last glimpse of the von Trapp family, they're climbing ev'ry mountain on their way to freedom in Switzerland.
    • Auf Wiedersehen, goodbye.