Civil War Songs and Letters Performance

WAMMIE Award winning Americana band, Dead Men’s Hollow and the Guillotine Theatre based out of Georgetown, have combined their talents to produce a show that is historical, entertaining, thought-provoking, and enlightening. On May 31, the groups’ show, “Civil War Songs and Letters” will be performed at the Faux School, 35 South Carroll Street in Frederick, at 7:30pm. This live performance is presented by the Frederick Film Festival and will include the 10 minute film, The Wheatfield, prior to the performance.

The performance consists of actual letters from writers impacted by the events of and during the American Civil War read aloud by the professional actors of the Guillotine Theatre and accompanied by the amazing period performances of Civil War era music as well as music inspired by the war. The mixture of the two mediums, the spoken word and the music, flesh out the detail of the narrative, and the impact of the war itself on the lives that were being lived before it came, in a way that either single part would not be able to accomplish.

Poignant and heartbreaking and informative and insightful, these missives from both sides of the conflict reveal how the war impacted everyone, even those not on the front lines, from the commanding Generals, to non-military civilians, to those enslaved. A remarkable program that drives home the importance of a conflict that moves further away in time, but becomes more and more relevant when presented in this moving and entertaining way.

Dead Men’s Hollow is a well-established regional band that performs each year at a wide range of venues, from churches, bars, and festivals to fine arts halls such as the Birchmere, the Mansion at Strathmore and the Kennedy Center. The band draws its influences from bluegrass, country, blues, and gospel. The result is a unique sound, fronted by tight three-part female harmony vocals backed by fiddle, upright bass, and guitar. Dead Men’s Hollow has recorded five commercially released CDs, has appeared on national television, received more than 20 Washington Area Music Association “Wammie” Award nominations, won five Wammie Awards—including Best Bluegrass Group and Bluegrass Album of the Year—and is played on radio programs around the world.

The Guillotine Theatre (previously known as The Georgetown Theatre Company) was founded in July 1986 on the belief that theatre based on literature is an essential part of our culture. Plays are meant to be performed, not just read and Guillotine Theatre is dedicated to bringing great literature to Washington, D.C. audiences as live theatrical entertainment. In the age of small, conversational plays, Guillotine Theatre began offering exciting, larger-than-life situations and characters in works that explore the universal human condition.

The event will start at 7:30pm with a showing of the acclaimed film The Wheatfield, a short animated film written and performed by the esteemed actor Stephen Lang, provides the poignantly stirring tale of the Battle of Gettysburg centered through the eyes of an aged Union Soldier named James Jackson Purman, as he vividly recalls his fateful encounters with friends and foe. With a half century passed since the Battle of Gettysburg, a group of battle weary Civil War veterans gather in harmony, stripping away their former allegiances to north and south in hopes of peaceful fellowship.

Tickets for this event can be purchased now at: Admission is $12 in advance and $15 at the door. Refreshments will be available for purchase highlighted by Monocacy Brewing Company’s selection of their Civil War beers. Historical beers brewed with Civil War For more information about this event, please go to


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