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Johannes Von Trapp, 82, says he ‘never knew’ what it was like to not be famous

The youngest child of the real life Von Trapp family who inspired the Sound of Music has said the film is ‘far from a documentary’ and that he has ‘never known what it’s like to not be famous’ as he claimed fans of the film still visit their home to ask to see the children. 

Johannes Von Trapp, 82, spoke to Phillip Schofield and Josie Gibson on This Morning today from his family lodge in Vermont, he was joined by his son Sam, 49.

One of two of Georg and Maria’s surviving children, Johannes was born in  Philadelphia while the family where on tour after they fled Nazi-occupied Austria to New York just a year before.

‘I have to say I can’t remember a time when my family wasn’t well known or famous,’ he explained.

Johannes Von Trapp, 82, spoke to Phillip Schofield and Josie Gibson on This Morning today from his family lodge in Vermont, he was joined by his son Sam, 49.

‘We were well known among a small group who knew the kind of music we did, but The Sound of Music just opened us up to the whole world. 

‘All of a sudden people were coming to our small house in northern Vermont’.

Johannes also explained how his family rarely spoke of fleeing Austria and he only found out when he read his mother’s book about their tale.  

‘They talked about fleeing Austria very little, they were always looking ahead not behind, I didn’t know a lot until reading my mother’s book. 

‘The book made into a German play, the play then inspired a Broadway show which inspired the movie.

‘It’s not a documentary, we didn’t climb over the mountain, we got on the train to Italy. Although the next day the border was closed.

Johanne's family inspired the Sound of Music. Pictured Christopher Plummer in the film in 1965

Johanne’s family inspired the Sound of Music. Pictured Christopher Plummer in the film in 1965

‘From Italy, we then got a ship to New York City and got this contract for performances’.

All of the seven original children that feature in the film have passed away, but Johannes and his sister  Rosmarie, 93, who were born to Maria after the events of the film are still alive.

Their full-sister Eleonore died last month aged 90 – the last of their half-siblings Louisa died aged 99 in 2014. 

The family now run a the Von Trapp family lodge and despite the Oscar-winning film coming out 56 years ago, guests still expect to see the children from it.

‘People come to our lodge and ask to see the children, I say, I’m the youngest, I’m 82,’ Johannes explained. 

Johannes also explained how his family rarely spoke of fleeing Austria and he only found out when he read his mother's book about their tale.

Johannes also explained how his family rarely spoke of fleeing Austria and he only found out when he read his mother’s book about their tale.

‘Our staff can’t clean or serve guests because they’re asking questions about the Sound of Music’.

‘It’s a good opportunity as well for us to let people know about the history tours and then we can we can direct them to a spot where we can answer all the questions to a whole group save ourselves a little time 

Johannes’s son Sam added: ‘I think as a kid we had a complicated relationship with the Sound of Music we were a little bit confused when people would appear to know our family story.

‘And we couldn’t understand why. Because when we would ask about income, we were told that “oh, don’t worry about it. It’s just some small story about our family”.

Johannes's son Sam added: 'I think as a kid we had a complicated relationship with the Sound of Music we were a little bit confused when people would appear to know our family story.' Pictured: Julie Andrews in the film

Johannes’s son Sam added: ‘I think as a kid we had a complicated relationship with the Sound of Music we were a little bit confused when people would appear to know our family story.’ Pictured: Julie Andrews in the film 

‘So I did see it once when I was about seven or eight and again, when I was in my early 20s, and I’ve seen the play many times. It is a beautiful musical. And I have to say the music of Rodgers and Hammerstein I believe is what gives it such long lasting power.     

The Sound of Music tells the tale of Maria – played by Julie Andrews – a nun who goes to work as a governess for a widower and his seven unruly children.  

The real Maria Von Trapp was born in 1905 while travelling from her parents’ village in Tyrol to a hospital in Vienna, Austria, on a train.

By the time she was ten both of her parents had died and she was sent to live with a violent uncle.

The real Maria Von Trapp was born in 1905 while travelling from her parents' village in Tyrol to a hospital in Vienna, Austria, on a train. Pictured a scene from the film

The real Maria Von Trapp was born in 1905 while travelling from her parents’ village in Tyrol to a hospital in Vienna, Austria, on a train. Pictured a scene from the film 

Maria escaped from him and in 1926 she was a schoolteacher at the Nonnberg Abbey, in Salzburg, intending to become a nun.

But while there she was asked to take a job as a governess at the home of a widowed man, who was left with seven children after his first wife Agatha died of scarlet fever.

That man was Georg von Trapp. They would quickly become married and have three more children.

 It was not long before Maria founded a family choir. Although the children sang together before she joined them, they remember her particularly pushing public performances – especially after Georg lost his fortune.

After fleeing the country in 1938, the family – known as the Trapp Family Singers in the US – came to rely on the performances for money.

The popular film was made after Broadway found a book detailing the family’s adventurers.

Maria later sold the rights to Hollywood for £3,000. 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk