"The Civil War" Becomes A Downtown Musical

Jul 23, 2014

Credit alplm

You may know the story of the war between the states.  But what is often overlooked is the emotional drama the period had on those who lived through it.

The musical "The Civil War" brings that part of the story to the stage in downtown Springfield starting Thursday night. 

"It's not a history lesson, although you learn a lot," Co-director Phil Funkenbusch said. "It's really a concert theatre piece."

"Instead of telling the story of the Civil War, it's really telling the stories about the people involved in the war."

Cast member Carly Shank calls it an "emotional, costumed concert about the Civil War."

"It really digs into walking a mile in somebody's shoes who was a slave, who was a soldier, who was a nurse," Shank said. "I don't know how someone can watch this and not be drawn in to having an experience that lets them understand a little better what people might have gone through."

Not lost on the cast and audience is the impact wars are having today on families. 

"The emotions the soldier's go through, how they change throughout the piece," Co-director Ed McMurdo said.  "From the beginning when everyone is enthusiastic about the war, they think it's not going to last  long at all. And then, as the piece moves on, the numbers become a little more emotional, a little more reflective."

The performances are July 24-27 at Union Square Park in front of Union Station.  Show time is 8 p.m. Organizers say there is plenty of seating.