“A heartbreaking tribute to the men, who, in defiance of their commanders had the courage to affirm their common humanity.” 
– The New Yorker
 

All is Calm puts a human face on WWI”
– San Francisco Globe
 

“One of the top live events for Christmas in North America.”
– BBC Music Magazine
 

 “All is Calm—a theatrical concert—feeds our need for heroes, gives space to our dreams for human nobility,
allows us to approach the enigma of Christmas and puzzle over the miracle that has stopped enemies from killing each other for one day.”

– Minneapolis Star Tribune
 

“It’s not only an outstanding piece of musical theater, but a brilliantly executed production that understands that its power comes from its simplicity.”
– St. Paul Pioneer Press
 

“Peter Rothstein, Erick Lichte and their charges have given us a great gift this season, reinvesting the words ‘Peace on Earth’ with their true meaning.”
– Minneapolis Star Tribune
 

“All is Calm can transport audiences to parts of the heart rarely explored.” 
-St. Paul Pioneer Press
 

“Filled with grace, beauty and stillness.”
– Vancouver Presents
 

 “A classic to be repeated for years to come.” 
– Minneapolis Star Tribune
 

“A beautiful present for theater-goers.”
– St. Louis Post-Dispatch

 


New staging of 'All Is Calm' brings clarity, power

"This beautiful jewel has been made brighter, more precious in the best sense of the word. What is unchanged is its quiet power to illustrate peace on Earth."

— Graydon Royce, Minneapolis Star Tribune Related Link


All is Calm is filled with grace, beauty, and stillness

"All is Calm is a show of grace, beauty, and stillness and a reminder the true spirit of Christmas can be found in all of us – no matter the situation, no matter how small."

— Chelsey Stuyt, Vancouver Presents Related Link



'All is Calm' is a powerful, lovely play about an ugly time in history

"This sense of verisimilitude is part of what gives 'All is Calm' its poignancy and its charm.... The real-life telling gets depth, texture and additional historical context from the songs, which are masterfully delivered by Cantus."

— Dominic P. Papatola, St. Paul Pioneer Press Related Link


'All is Calm' in Berkeley

All is Calm puts a human face on WWI.”

— Joshua Kosman, SFGate Related Link


North American Live Choice

“One of the top live events for Christmas in North America.”

— Brian Wise, BBC Music Magazine


"All Is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914" at the Pantages Theatre Captures the Spirit of Christmas

"'All is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914' is a play that you shouldn’t miss."

— Maggie Fisher, Twin Cities Daily Planet Related Link


Cantus sings of Christmas peace

"The performance has a timeless air of mystery and wonder."

— Graydon Royce, Minneapolis Star-Tribune Related Link


"All is Calm" a simple holiday gem

"This raw and aching beauty defines 'All Is Calm.' Rothstein's decision to let the men speak for themselves seems wiser than ever, for these words assume a sacred quality. They carry the hopes and the amazement of young men terrorized by war and then healed by a moment of mysterious mercy. In this, 'All Is Calm' becomes a small, still litany, taking details of history and transforming them into something far greater -- a myth that manifests the highest ideals of humanity." Read More...

— Graydon Royce, Minneapolis Star-Tribune Related Link


Vocal ensemble explores forgotten war history at Opera House

"Writer Peter Rothstein learned about this unheard of Christmas truce and, working with the members and directors of Cantus, put together a riveting musical and spoken performance titled 'All Is Calm.'

"Last Friday night, Cantus held a Napa Valley Opera House audience spellbound as the details of this remarkable calm in the trenches were laid out."

Read More...

— L. Pierce Carson, Napa Valley Register Related Link


"All Is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914" at the Pantages Theatre: Heavenly hosts sing Alleluia

"The program-a collaboration between Theater Latté Da, Hennepin Theatre Trust, and the male ensemble Cantus, who provide the stunning and almost ceaseless vocals-is not quite a play, but more like a vocal retelling of history.

"Because of the show's sheer beauty we are left with this imperfect, but not all together unsatisfactory, answer to the soldier's question. The story of the Christmas truce teaches us that at our best we are capable of laying down our guns and lifting our voices as one."

Read More...
— Madeline Salmon, Twin Cities Daily Planet Related Link


History Deconstructed

"All Is Calm first premiered in 2007, and the Hennepin Theater Trust continues to stage the show each year at Christmas time to remind audiences of one of the most magical Christmas tales of all. It is a wonderful break from the hustle and bustle of the corporatized holiday season, reminding us all that sometimes the best gives we receive are the simplest ones." Read More...

— Becki Iverson, Twin Cities Metro Related Link


A separate peace

"This is a true ensemble show, and each performer fully carried his weight. But greatest credit must go to Rothstein and musical arrangers Erick Lichte and Timothy C. Takach, whose music and story seamlessly intertwined."

— Matt McGeachy, Minnesota Playlist Related Link


'All is Calm' offers peace on an intimate scale

"But especially thanks to the nine men of Cantus, whose harmonies are the heart and spirit of this work. It is they who vividly convey the combination of excitement and fear as soldiers answer the call to arms, their sadness as death tolls mount, and the hope and wonder as the truce ensues. The stories are strong, but it's the music that makes "All Is Calm" such a touching experience." Read More...

— Rob Hubbard, St. Paul Pioneer Press Related Link


All Is Calm

"Channeled through the impeccably layered vocals of chamber ensemble Cantus, songs combine with stories in paying solemn tribute to a universal humanity indivisible by dogmatic ideologies and national identities. In these ever combative times, such unbroken harmony represents nothing less than a genuine yuletide miracle."

— Brad Richason, City Pages Related Link


'All is Calm' recreates real Christmas miracle

"The nine-member ensemble makes absolutely gorgeous music together, be it for the early pieces about getting ready for war, the resulting reality of the trenches, or through a series of traditional carols and Christmas songs during the truce itself. Their arrangements draw fresh emotion out of the most familiar pieces, such as on 'Silent Night,' where they repeat and alter the tone of the 'All is Calm' line until it becomes something mysterious and magical--just like the truce itself." Read More...

— Ed Huyck, Minneapolis City Pages Related Link


'Calm' remains a holiday balm

"And if a classic work is marked by its capacity to stretch and deepen in meaning on repeated viewings, then "All is Calm" seems destined to become timeless. Even without an ornament or a shred of red drapery anywhere on its stark set, 'All is Calm' has no peer in the Christmas theatrical sweepstakes -- on the terms of celebrating the possibility of peace on earth, goodwill to all." Read More...

— Graydon Royce, Minneapolis Star Tribune Related Link


'All is Calm' reminds us peace has power to prevail over war

"'All is Calm' is a tremendously moving work that pulls hope from a hopeless situation, its words directly from the mouths and pens of the participants, its music able to bring both warmth and chills." Read More...

— Rob Hubbard, St. Paul Pioneer Press Related Link


Lessons and Carols from No Man's Land

"The entire performance was memorized, so no annoying books were being bobbled around, allowing the singers and actors to communicate completely with the audience. It is rare to hear professional vocal ensembles 'off of their music' these days and this reviewer was thrilled." Read More...

— Megan Browne Helm, KCMetropolis.org Related Link


"All Is Calm" tells the moving story of the Christmas Truce of 1914

"The men of Cantus are simply magnificent in their interpretations. You will never hear some of these songs in quite the same way again." Read More...

— Lydia Howell, Twin Cities Daily Planet Related Link


Truce be told

"The story of the Christmas truce of 1914, long denied access to history books, is becoming an annual holiday classic thanks to the musical ‘All is Calm'" Read More...

— Tricia Cornell, Minneapolis Downtown Journal Related Link


Act of peace in time of war

"'Many historians credit 'Silent Night' with being the song that actually started the truce,' Humble said. 'People said the Germans started it, and the English recognized the song as something that was sung in England as well.'" Read More...

— Patrick S. Pemberton, San Luis Obispo Tribune Related Link


'All is Calm' celebrates peace ... in wartime

"Around this time last year, Rothstein enlisted the ideal collaborators for his piece in Cantus, a nine-man male chorus that started life at Northfield's St. Olaf College. Now they've revived 'All is Calm,' which opened a six-performance run at Minneapolis' Pantages Theatre on Thursday night. And it's not only an outstanding piece of musical theater, but a brilliantly executed production that understands that its power comes from its simplicity."
Read More...

— Rob Hubbard, St. Paul Pioneer Press Related Link


Theater review: All is right with 'All Is Calm'

"Above all, though, Rothstein and Cantus (led by artistic director Erick Lichte) find the ineffable mystery of this story: German and Allied voices take on haunting resonance, singing 'Stille Nacht' on a field normally thundering with artillery; a French opera tenor amazes comrades by spontaneously singing 'O Holy Night'; the 23rd Psalm is solemnly recited in English and German as enemies honor their fallen; the sheer felicity of the moment is reflected in one soldier's observation that 'we were laughing and chatting with men we were trying to shoot hours before./" Read More...

— Graydon Royce, Minneapolis Star Tribune Related Link


12.19.08: All is Calm @ The Pantages Theater

"But it's the voices of the Cantus singers that make most of the magic in this show. Even when they're singing moldy oldies like 'Pack up Your Troubles' (in your old kit bag, and smile, smile . . .) or holiday staples like 'O Tannenbaum' and 'Good King Wencenslas,' the arrangements are sophisticated and the execution superb. Cantus' version of 'Silent Night' blends German and English lyrics with six-part harmonies to create an almost unbearably sad coda to the events of that night. In fact, the sound Cantus produced on Friday night was so undeniably sacred that, when the show ended, no one in the audience Friday night wanted to be the first to break the spell. We all sat in silence, wondering who would be the first to clap." Read More...

— Tad Simons, Mpls.St.Paul Magazine Related Link


"All Is Calm" sounds a moving choir of peace from the trenches of war

"All Is Calm inspires with a view of human goodness that extends beyond nationality. In this holiday season, when we speak most highly of peace on Earth, All Is Calm provides the actual realization of those words. Instead of a seasonal slogan, All Is Calm shows a universal goodwill that could be a reality if only we have the courage to act in accordance with our shared humanity." Read More...

— Brad Richason, Twin Cities Examiner Related Link


The buzz continues for 'All is Calm'

"'All is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914' is on my must-see list this year. Last year, the original work of musical theater was the talk of the Twin Cities, impressing critics and audiences alike. It sold out with 3,000 people attending performances at three churches in the area."
Read More...

— Camille LeFevre, MinnPost Related Link


OnStage: What makes a classic?

"Perhaps time itself is not the sole arbiter of a classic. For example, 'All Is Calm' -- a theatrical concert -- feeds our need for heroes, gives space to our dreams of human nobility, allows us to approach the enigma of Christmas and puzzle over the miracle that stopped enemies from killing each other for one day."
Read More...

— Graydon Royce, Mineapolis Star Tribune Related Link


Play Retells Little-Known Christmas Truce Of 1914

"'I think what they did that Christmas of 1914 was heroic. And I hope this play gives them a little place in history that they deserve,' he said." Read More...

— Jeanette Trompeter, WCCO (Minneapolis) Related Link


Christmas truce on WWI battlefield inspires theater show 94 years later

"'Words alone cannot convey the depth of feeling; music is essential to the telling of this story,' Rothstein said. 'In fact, I believe music was essential to the Christmas Truce. The soldiers would hold impromptu concerts for each other, singing from their trenches to their enemy across No Man's Land. They spoke many different languages, but music was a language they all had in common.'" Read More...

— Julia Ann Weekes, NewHampshire.com Related Link


CD Review: All is Calm

"Simply amazing. Looking for something special to surprise and entertain your family this holiday season? Look no further. The collaboration between Cantus and Theater Latte Da has created the perfect holiday gift: All Is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914. Enough said!" Read More...

— Carol Swanson, ChristmasReviews.com Related Link