About the Format

The Hardtacks present participatory concerts & classes featuring mid-19th century American folk music & voices in a unique combination of PERIOD MUSIC, PRIMARY SOURCE TEXTS, & VISUAL MATERIALS.  That means our audience members not only experience exciting historical music & ideas —  they take part in performing them as well!

Here’s a sample program from a Fall 2014 performance, designed and printed in the style of period posters and playbills:


Before the show, we invite volunteer audience members to choose “parts” which they will read aloud between specific songs; click on any of the sample pages below to view the related texts:

[view sample PDF of texts]

Throughout the show, our volunteers take turns reading their parts in a Lyceum-style format.  Whether reading dramatically, in character, or simply sharing their text, each reader supplies new ideas, context, and counterpoint related to the musical performances.

Whenever possible, we also offer our Songster, CDs, & other merchandise for perusal & sale at the event.

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