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Charmian Carr

Personal information
Birth nameCharmian Farnon
Birth dateDecember 27, 1942(age 73)
Place of birthChicago, Illinois, U.S.
OccupationActress
Years active1965-present
SpouseJay Brent (1967 91) (divorced)

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Charmian Carr (born December 27, 1942) is an American actress and singer. She is mainly known for her role as Liesl, the eldest Von Trapp daughter in The Sound of Music where she starred with Julie Andrews, Christopher Plummer, Nicholas Hammond, Heather Menzies, Duane Chase, Angela Cartwright, Debbie Turner, and Kym Karath.

Carr was born Charmian Farnon in Chicago, Illinois. She is the second child of vaudeville actress Rita Oehman and musician Brian Farnon, who named her Charmian after a character from Shakespeare's play Antony and Cleopatra. She has two sisters, one older and one younger. Her sisters, both actresses, are Shannon Farnon and Darleen Carr.

While Charmian was attending college part-time and working for a doctor, her mother arranged for her to audition for a role in The Sound of Music. Charmian's mother had not asked her if she wanted to audition for the part, but Charmian grew up in a show business family and said that she knew that her mother would consider her getting a part in a film more important than earning a college diploma. Director Robert Wise thought Farnon too long a surname for her, and after he had given her a list of single syllable surnames, she chose Carr. She won the role of Liesl over Geraldine Chaplin, Patty Duke, Mia Farrow and Sharon Tate.

The film was on the whole a very happy experience for her. During the filming of her dance scene with Rolf in the gazebo, however, the costume crew forgot to put no-slip pads on her shoes, she slid through a window of the gazebo and she "had to complete the scene in agony."

Carr also appeared in Evening Primrose, a one-hour musical written by Stephen Sondheim, which aired on television's ABC Stage 67 in 1966. The male lead was Anthony Perkins. She has written two books, Forever Liesl and Letters to Liesl.

While publicising The Sound of Music after its release, Carr met Jay Brent, whom she married in May 1967. She retired from acting to raise her two daughters, Jennifer and Emily, and to establish an interior decorating company. The marriage lasted until 1991.

Carr now owns and operates Charmian Carr Designs in Encino, California. Her interior decorating clients included Ernest Lehman, screenwriter for The Sound of Music; Michael Jackson, who hired her because he was a fan of the film; and other cast members from the film.

On December 12, 2007, Carr made a rare television appearance as a guest on Loose Women where she shared some of her memories of making The Sound of Music with the hosts.

Carr reunited with all of her co-stars from The Sound of Music on The Oprah Winfrey Show in October 2010 to celebrate the 45th anniversary of The Sound of Music.


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