Oh What a Lovely War | The ArtsCenter | Stage | Indy Week

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Oh What a Lovely War

When: May 15-24 2015

OH WHAT A LOVELY WAR

THE ARTSCENTER, CARRBORO

FRIDAY, MAY 15–SUNDAY, MAY 24

The songs that rally the troops in a time of war can always be revised to tell a different truth. Take this little number, set to the tune of "Onward, Christian Soldiers:" "Forward Joe Soap's army, marching without fear / With our old commander, safely in the rear / He boasts and skites from morn to night and thinks he's very brave / But the men who really did the job are dead and in the grave." Joan Littlewood's frank, irreverent compendium of ditties, hymns and dirges that British soldiers sang during World War I reflects the complex, changing face of armed combat—and a country's ideals, shattered hopes and darkest fears, as a war of hitherto unimaginable proportions wipes out 10 million in four years. Hope Alexander directs and Glenn Mehrbach leads the band; the ensemble includes Germain Choffart, Marcia Edmundson, Julie Oliver and Ian Bowater. 8 p.m. Thurs.–Sat.;

3 p.m. Sun., $12–$18, 300-G E. Main St., Carrboro, 919-929-2787, www.artscenterlive.org. —Byron Woods

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