Few voices are as enduring as the smooth, bright soprano that told us how to get our medicine down and why the hills are alive. Julie Andrews, who turns 80 on Thursday, may be American theater and cinema’s most beloved British import of the 20th century, as fondly remembered for her sternly magical Mary Poppins as she is for her hill-frolicking Maria in The Sound of Music. Her frequent roles on stage and screen during the heyday of LIFE Magazine made her a regular subject in its pages. The best of those images are featured in this gallery.
Liz Ronk, who edited this gallery, is the Photo Editor for LIFE.com. Follow her on Twitter @lizabethronk.