Julie Andrews has one of the most iconic voices in film history. Her crisp, clipped tones and sunny warmth are instantly recognizable to movie (and Disney!) lovers around the world.
So it’s practically perfect in every way that Andrews would narrate the audiobook for her forthcoming memoir, Home Work: A Memoir of My Hollywood Years. After all, who else could bring her story to life in the same way?
EW is delighted to exclusively debut an excerpt from Andrews’ recording of her memoir. In the above clip, she recounts a memory from the set of The Sound of Music, detailing the difficulties of the weather and terrain in Salzburg, Austria.
“Someone had evidently forgotten to mention to our production crew that Salzburg has Europe’s seventh-highest annual rainfall,” Andrews begins. “The rains began in our first days there, and from then on, our budget and schedule were totally governed by the weather.”
The actress goes on to detail how the crew tried to find interior shots to help use the time productively during weather delays, but the solution only went so far, as they had already filmed the majority of their interior locations on the Fox lot back in Hollywood.
Some of The Sound of Music‘s most iconic scenes take place in the hills of the Alps, including the opening number with the title song where Andrews, as Maria, frolics through the early morning beauty on the mountainside. The actress recalls that the equipment trucks had to park at the bottom of the particular mountain they were shooting at and camera equipment had to be carried up the mountainside on an ox-drawn cart while the cast and crew walked.
Andrews recalls an amusing day when director Robert Wise advised her to sit on the cart with the cameras because it was a particularly muddy, windy day. “I happened to be wearing a fur coat. It was the 1960s after all, and the humor in the contrast between my attire and the mode of transport wasn’t lost on any of us,” she writes, with her signature warmth and sense of humor shining through in her voice.
The audiobook is a family effort. Andrews’ daughter, and frequent co-author/collaborator, Emma Walton Hamilton, directed the recording and the audiobook overall.
Home Work is the follow-up to Andrews’ critically acclaimed first memoir, Home, in which she recounted stories of her difficult childhood and her early years as a performer on the stage. Home Work brings fans into more familiar territory, picking up with Andrews’ arrival in Hollywood and her rise to fame on projects like Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music.
Andrews reflects on her lengthy, noteworthy career, examining the highs and lows of her decades in Hollywood. She lends the behind-the-scenes stories of some of Hollywood’s most classic films a personal candor, delving into her struggles to adjust to the world of filmmaking and fame. She also unveils more tales from her personal life, discussing everything from the end of her first marriage to becoming a mother to falling in love with director Blake Edwards.
Home Work, in both hardback and audiobook, hits shelves Oct. 15.