South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center
Press Release

South Milwaukee PAC Presents: In Thinking of America: Songs of the Civil War

Sunday, March 29, 2:00 pm

By - Mar 12th, 2015 11:49 am
Robert Trentham

Robert Trentham

(South Milwaukee, WI) – In recognition of the Civil War sesquicentennial, South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center is proud to present Robert Trentham’s In Thinking of America: Songs of the Civil War, featuring soloist Robert Trentham performing a variety of songs that consoled and inspired a divided country. The program is a tribute to those who lived and died during the Civil War period. It includes speeches, social commentary and letters that date back to the 1860’s from statesmen, journalists, citizens, and soldiers, providing the audience with a glimpse back in time.

Trentham will sing many traditional tunes such as “Just Before the Battle Mother,” “Steal Away,” “Dixie’s Land,” “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” and a particular crowd favorite, “Goober Peas.” The Evening Sun praises the performance by quoting, “The music performed by Trentham is grandiose and powerful, ranging from deep and sorrowful to light-hearted and mocking. Each song offers a different perspective on the turbulent Victorian Era in the United States.”

The South Milwaukee Historical Society will also be on hand to present their recent publication, Letters to Mettie, a collection of letters from four Civil War soldiers to Marietta Rawson, who grew up in the South Milwaukee and Oak Creek area during the Civil War. “I was 15 years old at the start of the Civil War and was studying to become a teacher. I liked to write letters so when the young men from the basket factory joined up with the Company K of the Wisconsin Volunteers, I started to write letters to them. I kept the letters they wrote back to me.” (Lois Schreiter for Marietta Rawson Hook, excerpted from Letters to Mettie.)

Tickets for the Sunday, March 29 performance are $15 to $25, with discounts for seniors and students. Tickets may be purchased online at, by phone at (414) 766-5049, or in-person at the Box Office at 901 15th Avenue, South Milwaukee, WI 53172. The show will start at 2:00 p.m.

Robert Trentham has been featured and reviewed in a number of well known U.S. publications and newspapers including the Chicago Tribune, New York Magazine, Los Angeles Times, Opera Magazine, and the New York Times. Trentham sang solo in multitudes of American concert halls, regional theaters, and opera companies throughout the country.


The South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center (SMPAC) provides the greater Milwaukee and southeastern Wisconsin communities with creative, innovative and diverse performing arts. Located on the South Milwaukee 6-12 campus, it serves the students of the city of South Milwaukee and provides professional services for more than 500 shows, performances, rehearsals and other events annually. Upcoming 2014-15 artists include Jerome Kitzke’s Winter Count and Howl, and the 10th Anniversary Gala: An Extravaganza of Local Talent.

Student matinees, workshops and talk-backs for all grade levels are provided by some season artists, including Robert Glasper, the Milwaukee Ballet II, Avner Eisenberg,  Sybarite5, ACME, Baby Wants Candy, Calmus and Christopher McIntyre Perceptions (CMP). Other artists and organizations that provide performing arts experiences for students include the Florentine Opera, Danceworks, Still Waters Collective, Skai Academy of the Performing Arts and the Missoula Children’s Theatre.

SMPAC also opens our doors to other presenters for artists such as George Winston, Lindsey Buckingham, Arlo Guthrie, Jesse Cook, Ruthie Foster, Tommy Emmanuel, John Hiatt, Ian Hunter, Joe Lovano, Cantare Chorale and Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra. The SMPAC provides a home to the School District of South Milwaukee events and the Grant Park Players, the local community theatre.

The South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center is located at 901 15th Avenue in South Milwaukee between College and Rawson Avenues. It is easily accessible from I-94 and 794. Free parking is located in the northwest parking lot. Patrons should enter door #9. For tickets or directions, call 414-766-5049. For more information about the South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center, visit

Performances are supported in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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