Holiday entertainment of the most deeply satisfying kind. - The Boston Globe

It's Christmas Eve 1864. In the White House, President and Mrs. Lincoln plot their gift-giving. On the Potomac, a young rebel soldier challenges a Union blacksmith's mercy. In the streets, a fugitive from slavery searches for her daughter on the night she finds freedom. In this new play with music from Pulitzer Prize winner Paula Vogel, these stories and more are woven into an American tapestry, showing us that the gladness of one's heart is the greatest gift of all.

Video

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Articles

  • Ancestors in the Room: An Interview with Paula Vogel

    Pulitzer-winning playwright Paula Vogel, whose play The Long Christmas Ride Home played Long Wharf Theatre in 2004, is now chair of playwriting at the Yale School of Drama and an associate artist at Long Wharf.

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  • A Musical Quilt: An Interview with Composer Daryl Waters

    Musical Supervisor Daryl Waters can be hard to find in and around the rehearsal hall for A Civil War Christmas. He might be at his table, musing over his script; at a music stand, furiously penciling notes on manila pages of blank musical staffs; with headphones and laptop, listening to examples of Christmas carols from director Tina Landau; or at the keyboard, playing through a new scene with the cast.

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  • Through the Eyes of the Poet: Living Voices of the Civil War

    The poetry of the Civil War captures the conflicted experiences of a divided nation like no other written account can. The vitality of sound and space that a well-constructed poem evokes transports the reader directly to a specific battlefield or war-torn home, allowing even the modern reader to experience the war from a personal perspective.

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  • Testimonies of the Faithful

    Soldiers, officers, and chaplains often improvised around the holidays to recreate traditions and remember loved ones. They did their best to organize Christmas or Passover celebrations.

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  • The Convergence of Christmas: Paula Vogel's Christmas Plays

    A Civil War Christmas is not the first of Paula Vogel's plays to have "Christmas" in the title. Her play The Long Christmas Ride Home, which Long Wharf produced in January 2004, begins on Christmas Eve "decades and days ago/On the outskirts of Washington, D.C./just inside the Beltway."

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  • Collaborators in Conversation: Paula Vogel and Peter DuBois

    Huntington Artistic Director Peter DuBois talks with playwright Paula Vogel, author of A Civil War Christmas: An American Musical Celebration and Peter's former mentor at Brown University.

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Press Reviews

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"An ambitious and richly detailed new seasonal offering. A Civil War Christmas is the rare holiday entertainment that brings intellectual nourishment as much as it entertains." — The New York Times
"Heartfelt, sweeping, rich and moving." — Variety
"VIBRANT, unique, and remarkable. A memorable experience. This epic piece marks a high point in Paula Vogel's admirable body of work."— New York Theatre Scene
"Holiday entertainment of the most DEEPLY SATISFYING kind. Ambitious in scope and generous in spirit. A Civil War Christmas fully delivers on its promise to create a rich national narrative. It's a Christmas story, yes, but also the story of all holidays, and all traditions, that light a candle against the darkness. An enduring piece of theatre for Christmases yet to come." — Boston Globe
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Features

  • Holiday Lights: A Civil War Christmas

    From WCVB Channel 5, December 9, 2009: Uzo Aduba (Hannah) and Alanna Logan (Jessa) perform a medley of songs from A Civil War Christmas: An American Musical Celebration at the Boston Common Tree Lighting Ceremony.
  • Community choruses lend voices to A Civil War Christmas

    From The Boston Globe, November 13, 2009: "They're packing up their glory and bringing it downtown. The singers are young and old, of different creeds and colors and musical approaches, from suburban parishes and inner-city churches and college campuses. . . ."
  • Civil War Christmas Carol

    From Wicked Local, November 11, 2009: "Ask Paula Vogel how her life changed after winning the 1998 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, and you don't get the answer you expected. . . ."

Artists

  • Uzo AdubaHannah, Rose, Aggy, Matron
  • Chris BannowChester Manton Saunders, Hay, John Surratt, Union Soldier
  • Jason BowenWilly Mack, Walker Lewis, Jim Wormley
  • Gilbert Glenn BrownDecatur Bronson, James Wormley, Philip Ree
  • Ken CheesemanAbraham Lincoln, Walt Whitman, Silver
  • Ed HoopmanJohn Wilkes Booth, Robert E. Lee, William Tecumseh Sherman, Raider 2, Mary Surratt, Union Solder
  • Karen MacDonaldMary Todd Lincoln, Secretary of War Stanton, Widow Saunders
  • DeLance MinefeeEly Parker, George’s Ghost, Frederick Wormley, Moses Levy, Louis J. Wiechmann, Reverend Brown
  • Jacqui ParkerElizabeth Keckley, Mrs. Thomas
  • Stephen RussellHenry Wadsworth Longfellow, Ulysses S. Grant, Ward Hill Lamon, Lewish Payne, Raider 1, Burwell, Minister
  • Molly SchreiberRaz, Anna Surratt, Nicolay, Clara Barton, Mule
  • Alanna T. LoganJessa (at select performances)
  • Hyacinth TauriacJessa (at select performances)
  • Paula VogelPlaywright
  • Jessica ThebusDirector
  • Andrew ResnickMusic Director, Pianist
  • Daniel OstlingScenic Designer
  • Miranda HoffmanCostume Designer
  • Ben EmersonSound Designer
  • Daryl WatersMusic Supervisor, Arranger, and Orchestrator; Incidental Music
  • Alaine AlldafferCasting Director
  • Gail P. LunaProduction Stage Manager
  • Leslie SearsStage Manager

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