ABC’s 20/20 to air Sound of Music special March 18

Diane Sawyer and Julie Andrews travel to Salzburg to explore the family and the story behind the beloved, Oscar-winning musical The Sound of Music.

Diane Sawyer and Dame Julie Andrews in “The Untold Story of The Sound of Music,” a special edition of 20/20 premiering Wednesday, March 18 at 10pm ET on the ABC Television Network. Photo credit: ABC/ Ida Mae Astute)

ABC’s 20/20 will present a special hour celebrating the 50th anniversary of The Sound of Music on Wednesday March 18, at 10pm ET/PT.

Diane Sawyer travels to Austria with the film’s star Dame Julie Andrews to explore the real story behind the beloved, Oscar-winning Rodgers and Hammerstein musical and retrace the steps of the real-life von Trapp family, including the house where Maria von Trapp lived and the train station where the family made its final escape from the Nazis. Mother Abbess of the Nonnberg Abbey and Christopher Plummer also weigh in on their feelings about the film and Plummer discusses his and Andrews’ close bond.

When the film premiered in 1965, its tale of family unity and hope in the face of extreme adversity resonated with an American population in turmoil over the realities of the Vietnam War and the bloodshed in Selma, Ala. Sawyer and Andrews delve into this historical context and its lasting impact on the cultural spectrum — as evidenced by the love Lady Gaga gave Andrews and the film at the 2015 Oscars.

Throughout the hour, Andrews shares stories about her real life and what it was like to live in the skin of the beloved Maria, and talks about her favorite and least favorite songs from the film.

The special also takes viewers on a memorable visit to such Sounds of Music landmarks including the meadow, fountain, gazebo, Mirabell Gardens and St. Michael’s Church, and Sawyer combs through photographs and video from the set and of the real von Trapps.

Diane Sawyer and Julie Andrews visit the real Villa Trapp, home of the Von Trapp family. (ABC/ Ida Mae Astute)

20/20“The Untold Story of ‘The Sound of Music’” premieres Wednesday, March 18 at 10pm ET on ABC.

Images/video: ABC


  1. Good news for cable customers — the special is currently available as a ABC, 20/20 On Demand offering.

  2. Unfortunately, ABC has no plans to re-air the special at this time. Checking on On Demand availability.

    • I missed about half of this and what I did see was excellent. Im over here with the rest of you wanting to know if this will repair. I think it should be made available so anyone can acquire. It would be a great keeper along with the movie.

  3. No one could ever be Maria except Julie Andrews, she won our hearts 50 years ago and will be in our hearts Forever, her talent, her courage, her grace, she has so much class but most of all her warmth, she is a one of a kind…..MJS

    • I would agree, but before Andrews, there were many who would say the same about Mary Martin.

  4. Will this be available on the website to view the next day with my 3rd grade class? We just finished watching the Sound of Music on Friday 🙂

  5. My friend was married at the home of the Van Trapp family to a man from Austria 3 years ago.

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About Lori Acken 1195 Articles
Lori just hasn't been the same since "thirtysomething" and "Northern Exposure" went off the air.