BBC Sound of Music Maria

BBC How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria?
Abi - Aoife - Belinda - Connie - Helena - Laura - Leanne - Meliz - Simona - Siobhan

How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?

Andrew Lloyd Webber is co-producing with David Ian a major new production of the musical The Sound of Music at the London Palladium from 3 November 2006 and the lead role of 'Maria Von Trapp' is going to be cast using the Saturday night television series, How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria? which was broadcast on Saturday evenings on BBC 1. The hope is that a new musical theatre star will be discovered!

The Search For Maria...

Well done Connie! On Saturday 16 September 2006 it was announced that, after 2 million telephone votes had been added up, Connie had won the television programme How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria? More information about The Sound of Music at The London Palladium!

Saturday 16 September 2006: The Grand Final First the public phone voting lines opened then, as per usual, each of the three finalists sung their solo number. They then returned and each sung a solo song from the musical The Sound of Music. Following this it was announced that the finalist who had the least number of public phone votes was Siobhan so she had to leave. After she had been voted off Andrew Lloyd Webber told her, on live television, that he had been approached by a record company offering her a major contract! With Siobhan gone, only two where left - Connie and Helena - and so the public phone voting lines where reopened... Both Helena and Connie then returned to reprise their favourite song from series, following which they then joined together to sing the title song from The Sound of Music - when the public phone lines where closed the result of over 2 million votes whee counted up and the winner that the public had choosen to play the lead role of 'Maria' in the new West End production of The Sound of Music was Connie! After much excitement Connie then returned to sing once again the song The Sound of Music. Well done Connie! About The Sound of Music at The London Palladium.

Saturday 9 September 2006: Once again two finalists said 'good-bye' this week. After each of the remain five finalists had sung their solo number and the public votes had been added up, it was announced that the two finalists who had come bottom where Aoife and Abi (who had come bottom). For the 'sing-off' they sung a joint rendition of 'Any Dream Will Do' from the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Joseph and his Amazing Techicolor Dreamcoat. Afterwards Andrew Lloyd Webber said that we wanted to keep Aoife. Them, after the second phone vote of the evening had closed it was announced that the two finalists who had come bottom where Siobhan and Aoife Mulholland (who come bottom). Together they sung the song Don't Cry For Me Argentina from the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Evita. After much deliberation Andrew Lloyd Webber said he wanted to save Siobhan, so Aoife had to say 'good bye' tonight.

Saturday 2 September 2006: This week two finalists said 'good bye'. After each of the seven remaining finalists had sung their solo song, and the first public phone vote of the evening had closed it was announced that Simona and Helena had come bottom (this is the third time Helena had come bottom). They sung a joing rendition of the song Memory from the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Cats. Unfortunately Simona forgot some of the words to the song. Andrew Lloyd Webber then decided he wanted to save Helena BUT interestingly, although Simona was saying 'good bye' to the role of 'Maria' in The Sound of Music, Andrew said that Simona must audition for his musical Evita which is currently playing in London. Them, after the second phone vote of the evening had closed it was announced that Helena had again came in the bottom pair, this time alone with Leanne. Together they sung the song I Don't Know How To Love Him from the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Jesus Christ Superstar. After much deliberation Andrew Lloyd Webber said he wanted to save Helena again, so Leanne was the second finalist to say 'good bye' tonight.

Saturday 26 August 2006: This week, after each of the finalists had sung their solo song, it was announced that the two who came lowest in the public phone vote where Helena and Meliz (who, for the second week running, came bottom). They then sung a joint rendition of the Andrew Lloyd Webber song 'Take That Look Off Your Face' from his musical Tell Me On A Sunday. Afterwards Andrew said that he wanted to save Helena. So Meliz leaves the competition and Helena survives to return next week! BUT, in a surprise move, it was announced that next week, not one but TWO finalists will leave the show!

Saturday 19 August 2006: Following the same format as last week, each of the remaining finalists sung a song. In addition they sung two ensemble songs 'My Favourite Things' from The Sound of Music and 'Don't Rain on My Parade' from Funny Girl. Once they had all sung their individual songs, phone lines opened for a couple of hours. Afterwards it was announced that the two finalists with the lowest phone votes where Belinda and Meliz (who came bottom). They then sung the Andrew Lloyd Webber duet 'Another Suitcase in Another Hall' from Evita. Afterwards Andrew Lloyd Webber said: "This is a complete and total nightmare. I'm in a quandary - I really am. But on the basis that we are looking for a contemporary Maria, the girl I have to save is Meliz." So Belinda leaves the competition, and Meliz survives to return next week! To conclude the television programme Belinda said goodbye with the song 'So Long, Farewell' from The Sound of Music.

Saturday 12 August 2006: With the ten finalists choosen last week, this week the public got their first change to vote for their favourite 'Maria'! To introduce the programme all the finalists sung the song 'How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?' from The Sound of Music after which each one sung their individual song. Once they had all sung phone lines opened for a couple of hours. Afterwards it was announced that the two finalists with the lowest phone votes where Laura and Helena (who came bottom). They then sung a joint rendition of Andrew Lloyd Webber's song 'No Matter What' from the musical Whistle Down the Wind. Afterwards Webber gave his casting vote to Helena, so Laura leaves the competition while Helena returns next week. It was announced that Connie recieved the highest number of public phone votes. To conclude the television programme Laura said goodbye with the song 'So Long, Farewell' from The Sound of Music.


Previously On BBC How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?

Open Auditions: The BBC started the search with a series of open auditions which were across the UK from during April and May 2006 including at Belfast (22 and 23 April), Cardiff (29 and 30 April), Manchester (6 and 7 May), London (13 and 14 May) and Edinburgh (20 and 21 May)...
Down to 200: From these Open Auditions just 200 where selected to go on to further auditions in London from where the number was due to be reduced to just 50...
Down to 50: Actually the judging panel, comprising of producer David Ian, actor John Barrowman and vocal coach Zoe Tyler, couldn't cut the number down to 50. Then Andrew Lloyd Webber - who caught up with the auditions via video tapes, wasn't too happy that a couple of the prospective Marias had been turned down by the judging panel - so he called back a couple to go to the Maria School - so there where a few more than the planned for 50! At the intensive four day 'Maria School' they were given the opportunity to get exclusive vocal and drama coaching and where able to put their voices through the paces required to star in a West End show. They where then whittled down to just 20...
Down to 20: Andrew Lloyd Webber then invited the final twenty hopefuls to perform at his country home at Sydmonton where he held a garden party for friends and family. Following their performances Andrew and the panel had to choose just ten finalists who would go through to the live show to be judged by the nation...
Down to 10: The the judges - producer David Ian, actor John Barrowman and vocal coach Zoe Tyler - with a little bit of help from Andrew, choose the final 10 who will go through to the public vote...
A last minute change But then, a few days following the selection of the final ten, one of the finalists, Emilie Alford, decided to pull out and so was replaced by Siobhan. This means that the ten finalists who will now go to the public vote are: Abi, Aoife, Belinda, Connie, Helena, Laura, Leanne, Meliz, Simona, Siobhan

The public votes: Saturday 12 August 2006 sees the first weekly public vote to elimiate one of the finalists. The two who come bottom in the public phone vote will have to sing again, and Andrew Lloyd Webber will than have a casting vote to say which one goes, and which one stays! Another one will then be elimated each week up to Saturday 16 September when the winner - who will play the coveted lead role of 'Maria' in the major West End revival of The Sound of Music will be announced!!!