LaGuardia High School's most recent production of "The Sound of Music" was missing some notable and pertinent props: specifically, Nazi iconography.
"The Sound of Music" follows Austria's Von Trapp family and takes place during the Third Reich. The family is depicted in the production fleeing the Nazi regime.
An article in the New York Daily News reports that the Nazi imagery sparked a furor among students and parents, so the school opted to tweak the classic Rodgers and Hammerstein musical to cut some Nazi-related items out.
LaGuardia High School, a public school in New York City, is a school for music, arts, and performing arts.
The night before opening night, principal Lisa Mars demanded that props with Nazi iconography be removed from costumes and set design.
An unidentified student involved with the production told the outlet, "They are removing some, but not all [of the flags] because then it becomes a copyright issue. The script will retain any Nazi phrases. It makes no sense. It's history, why change it?"
The city's department of education confirmed with the outlet that the Nazi flag would be featured in two of the play's scenes.
Spokesperson Miranda Barbot said, "The use of this historical symbol of hatred ... serves both an artistic and pedagogical purpose, and the decision to include it was made in collaboration with school staff, students, and families."
According to the outlet, many students and families were disturbed by the school's removal of such items.
"This is a very liberal school, we're all against Nazis," another unnamed student said. "But to take out the symbol is to try to erase history."
"Obviously the symbols are offensive," the student added. "But in context, they are supposed to be."
Another unnamed student said, "It's still going to be a great show. I'm not going to say it was going to be a bad night because this happened. But it would have been better to explain the symbolism than to just take it away."