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A CIVIL WAR CHRISTMAS NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW
Opening Night: December 4, 2012
Did He Like It?*
Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paula Vogel (How I Learned to Drive) weaves a rich tapestry of a beleaguered and divided nation, war-weary and desperate for goodwill, on a blustery Christmas Eve in 1864. Through the personal stories and struggles of a wide range of historical figures and fictional characters - from the President's wife to runaway slaves, Union and Confederate soldiers to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Walt Whitman - we learn that, for all their differences, one thing is clear: the yearning for peace cuts across religious and class divisions, color lines and, of course, the Mason-Dixon Line.
At once familiar and freshly re-imagined, the story of that winter night is alive with history, hope and humanity. Vividly staged by director Tina Landau and infused throughout with traditional carols and period music, A Civil War Christmas takes a sprawling new look at the seemingly intractable challenges we once faced to see how far we've come as a nation and how far we still have to go.
Lincolns in Wartime Hope for a Midnight Clear
*By CHARLES ISHERWOOD
Published: December 5, 2012
"The divisions plaguing a strife-torn country are not the only ones depicted in “A Civil War Christmas,” a beautifully stitched tapestry of American lives in transition in the fraught winter of 1864. Although the holidays are traditionally a time for festive coming together, most of the characters depicted in Paula Vogel’s song-trimmed drama, which opened on Tuesday night at New York Theater Workshop, are in search of loved ones lost in the fog of war or separated from family by the cruel finality of death."
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