Marching Through Culpeper’ Multimedia Musical Play To Open Cedar Mountain 150th
(July 2012 Civil War News)
Heroine Constance Armstrong (Maddison Hicks) and her Union beau Aaron Ames
(John Flemming) are shown at the Union George Washington’s Birthday Ball held
Feb. 22, 1864, in Culpeper, in a scene
from the new multimedia musical
"Marching Through Culpeper.”
CULPEPER, Va. — Culpeper County, which claims to be the most marched across county in the Civil War, will share some of that action on the stage when it commemorates the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Cedar Mountain.
The victory for Stonewall Jackson’s forces came on Aug. 9, 1862.
Hosted by the Friends of Cedar Mountain Battlefield, the cornerstone event of the anniversary, which includes a lunch, a symposium and battlefield activities, will be the multimedia musical production of “Marching Through Culpeper” scheduled for six performances, Aug. 3-5 and 10-12.
This story of love across battle lines is based on Virginia Morton’s historical novel Marching Through Culpeper, A Novel of Culpeper, Virginia, Crossroads of the Civil War, which has sold over 10,000 copies.
The play will open Aug. 3 with a World Premiere Reception. In addition to historian James I. Robertson, honored guests will include descendants of two characters in the show: Dr. Frank Stringfellow, great-grandson of Confederate scout Frank Stringfellow, and Jeb Stuart IV, great-grandson of the Confederate general; and Rod Stone, who wrote the original music and lyrics.
Morton says the show will thrill audiences of all ages. “The large cast includes talented and seasoned performers, youth, re-enactors, and even the town’s retired Town Manager,” she says.
All are “performing for preservation” as proceeds will be donated to preserve battlefields in Culpeper County.
The cast includes many historical figures. Culpeper County native Frank Stringfellow, who was rejected by cavalry units because of his small size, ultimately gained acceptance due to his daring and earned the reputation as “one of the most dangerous men in the Confederacy” after he captured Powhatan Cavalry pickets.
In the play he embroils close friend Constance Armstrong in his espionage schemes. When she takes a wounded Union soldier into her home, their growing attraction forces her to make difficult choices.
The pre-show reception will be 5-7 p.m. at the Daniel Technology Center in Culpeper. The performance will be at 7:30 at Eastern View High School. Tickets are available for the full evening with intermission dessert buffet or the show alone.
Anniversary activities include a 12:30 p.m. luncheon on Saturday, Aug. 4, with Robertson as the featured speaker at the Inn at Kelly’s Ford Arena.
He will discuss the conflict between A.P. Hill and Stonewall Jackson that began during the Cedar Mountain campaign and sign his latest book, The Untold Civil War. Tickets must be purchased in advance.
On Thursday, Aug. 9, a symposium on the Cedar Mountain Campaign featuring lectures by Todd Berkoff, Clark B. Hall, Greg Mertz, Nicholas Picerno, Jeffry Wert and Tanya Gossett will begin at 8:45 a.m. at Daniel Technology Center.
From 6:30 p.m. to dusk that day activities at Cedar Mountain Battlefield will include walking tours led by NPS historian Greg Mertz, lectures, living history, artillery and infantry demonstrations, Civil War music, displays and Echo Taps. Attendees should bring chairs. A $10 per vehicle parking fee will be charged.
For more information on tickets, costs and schedules go to www.marchingthroughculpeperonstage.com and www.friendsofcedarmountain.org