When she sets off to travel to Vienna for a performance, Jess comes to rediscover the musical inspiration she was missing, along with a new love interest.
The film, along with the protagonist's many enchanting performances, has many viewers wondering whether Sarah Drew actually plays the violin in the movie. Keep reading for answers!
Does Sarah Drew really play the violin in 'Christmas in Vienna'?
Actress Sarah Drew, who viewers might recognize as Dr. April Kepner from ABC's Grey's Anatomy or the voice of Stacy Rowe in Daria, is no stranger to Christmas movies. She's starred in 2019's Twinkle All the Way and the Lifetime movie Christmas Pen Pals.
This time around, in Hallmark's Christmas in Vienna, Sarah plays Jess, a concert violinist who has lost her passion for music but finds it thanks to a holiday trip to Vienna.
While visiting the romantic European city, she meets American diplomat Mark (Brennan Elliott) and falls in love.
But for Sarah, one of the hardest parts of getting into the role of Jess was learning "how to 'play' the violin." In other words, no, she is not a violin wiz, and had to spend "about three hours a day" practicing in the weeks leading up to her violin scenes.
Natalie Bonin, who did the score, as well as composed and played the violin pieces that Sarah "pretended to play," even congratulated Sarah at one point. "You have to fake it so it's believable and you really pulled it off," she complimented the actress.
"I also grew up listening to classical music, so the idea of playing a concert violinist was a really appealing idea to me," she told Glitter Mag Rocks. "In the story, my character Jess is struggling to find the joy in playing the violin, which has been her main focus her whole life."
"When we meet her, she is considering quitting altogether," Sarah continues. "I've never considered quitting acting, but I certainly relate to this struggle. There are so many beautiful open and honest conversations in this film while we are strolling down the stunning streets of Vienna, and I just thought I'd be crazy to pass on this opportunity."
Considering the way that the world was flipped upside down in the year since filming, Sarah considers the time she spent filming Christmas in Vienna "extremely special." "My husband got to come with me, and his grandfather was from Vienna," she shared. "His grandfather, who was Jewish, actually escaped and immigrated to America when Hitler occupied the country, with the help of his best friend, Otto."
"Well," the star continued, "Peter got to meet Otto's son while we were there and ended up learning so much about their friendship that he'd never known before. Peter and I also got to hear some INCREDIBLE classical music while we were there," she shared, adding that the whole time they spent filming in Europe was "such a special experience for both of us."
Watch Christmas in Vienna on the Hallmark Channel.