Oakwood Cemetery Series

Every fall, Burning Coal Theatre presents a series of short plays from Raleigh and Triangle playwrights as outdoor theatre. 

Content Warning for Oakwood 2023: Discussion of suicide, display of a prop gun

2023 Oakwood Cemetery Series in-person performances have concluded. The video-on-demand is available until November 1, 2023.


Click here for the digital program

Adapted by Jerome Davis from the book “Life and Death in High Places” by Bruce G. Miller and Robin Simonton

Directed by Allison Nicole Acuff

LIFE AND DEATH IN HIGH PLACES is a book by Oakwood Historians Bruce G. Miller and Robin Simonton about a particularly dramatic incident that reverberated throughout the Gilded Age in Raleigh. It details the true account of a shooting on Fayetteville Street in the year 1903.

Who’s accounts transcend time? Can we ever truly know the motivations behind a historical figure’s actions?

Content Warning: Discussion of suicide, display of a gun

Read more about the book that inspired this play on the Oakwood Cemetery website.

The 2023 Oakwood Cemetery Plays are held on September 29 – 30, 2023 at 6:30 pm and October 1st, 2023 at 2 pm

TICKETS are $20 (adults) and $10 (students) and are available at our online ticket sales (click here)  or by calling 919.834.4001.

This is a fundraising event for Burning Coal. All ticket sales go directly support Burning Coal’s 2022/23 Season. Your ticket will be a tax-deductible contribution.

LOCATION  701 Oakwood Ave, Raleigh, NC 27601.  You may drive into the cemetery and you will find our ticket table 100 yards up the driveway.

For additional information, please call 919.834.4001.

Every October, Burning Coal Theatre partners with the historic Oakwood Cemetery to present a plays based on the lives of people buried in the Oakwood Cemetery, their partners, neighbors, associates and nemeses’.

The historic figures represented in our plays are selected through annual recommendations from the cemetery’s historians. When writing the plays, we aim to create characters based closely on historical evidence with an objective of educating the public about Raleigh’s local history. Playwrights will also include fictional elements to support their story.

Playwrights from around the Triangle and sometimes beyond will craft these short plays that look at the comical, the tragic, the dastardly and the utterly heroic lives of those who came before and upon whose shoulders, for better and for worse, the Capital City was built.

Check back later for details on the creatives behind the production!