Sound of Music star dies
Charmian Carr, made famous for her role as Liesl Von Trapp in The Sound of Music dies aged 73
For a generation of children who grew up mesmerised by the cinematic majesty of The Sound of Music, today there is a sad sort of clanging from the clock in the hall and the bells in the steeple too.
One of the most beloved members of the film's cast, actress Charmian Carr, has died.
Carr was 73.
The actress turned interior designer played Liesl, the eldest daughter of Captain Georg von Trapp in the film.
Von Trapp, a retired Austrian naval officer, pleads for help with his seven undisciplined children and the call is answered by a novice nun, Maria, played by Julie Andrews.
The film, which ended up grossing more than a quarter of a billion dollars off a modest $US8 million budget, was based on the Rogers & Hammerstein stage musical of the same name.
It is considered one of the most successful film musicals of all time.
A spokesman for the actress said she died from complications stemming from a rare form of dementia.
In the film, Carr's key performance was the song Sixteen, Going On Seventeen, in which she sings of her romance with the local postal delivery boy, Rolf (Daniel Truhitte).
The gazebo where the pair take refuge during a rainstorm and sing the iconic love song has since become a tourist attraction in the city of Salzburg, Austria, where the film was set.
She also led her siblings in singing another of the film's key songs, So Long, Farewell, in which she boldly asked for her first sip of champagne.
Her on-screen father, played by Christopher Plummer, declined the request.
Carr later wrote about her experience working on The Sound of Music in two books, Forever Liesl and Letters to Liesl.
Carr was born in Chicago, Illinois, in 1942 and moved to Hollywood with her family as a child.
Then known as Charmian Farnon, she was chosen for the role of Liesl by The Sound of Music's director Robert Wise, but he felt her name was too long.
The veteran director offered her a list of potential surnames and she chose the new stage name of Charmian Carr.
In winning the role, Carr beat out a number of high-profile young actresses of the day, including Patty Duke, Mia Farrow and Lesley Ann Warren.
Carr also starred with Anthony Perkins in Evening Primrose, a one-hour musical written by Stephen Sondheim, which was filmed for television.
Carr is survived, in life, by two daughters Jennifer and Emily, and two grandchildren Emma and Derek.
Her alter-ego is survived on the screen by six fictional siblings, Friedrich, Louisa, Kurt, Brigitta, Marta and Gretel, played by actors Nicholas Hammond, Heather Menzies, Duane Chase, Angela Cartwright, Debbie Turner and Kym Karath.
And for the fans, there is little else to say but, for the last time, so long, farewell, auf Wiedersehen, good night.