"A powerful story, an empathic point of view - I really appreciated that it informed me of military operations realistically and accepted (did not deny or dramatize) the human fear, neither did it preach a specific point of view. Its honest perspective helps me have a broader understanding of what a person who does military service goes through. War is awful and to lose sight of the pride in those who serve ... your story brings out that need in a loving and human way."
- A listener from Fairfield, CT

"This Business of Fighting," is a live performance story, based on Tony Pritchard's letters to his parents in Rhode Island between his sailing for Europe in February 1944 and Germany's surrender about fifteen months later. Tony's letters don't tell you much about the "big picture;" you won't learn about why the Presidents and Prime Ministers and Generals made the decisions they did. You will hear a young man wonder how he will respond to his first combat. You will hear him describe crawling through the freezing, snow-covered woods of the Ardennes during the Battle of the Bulge. You will hear about crowds of released forced laborers wandering the roads of Germany as the Nazi regime was collapsing. You will hear about women desperately trying to preserve their homes as the tide of battle washes over them.

Listener Responses

"I hope you could see how rapt and attentive all the residents were last night. You struck a chord very close to our hearts. Arnie, how fortunate you found your father's letters and how beautifully you shared them... "
- A listener from Bloomfield, CT

"Great! You did such a wonderful job at VoiceMail. Your story is so well developed and delivered ... and was really riveting. We talked about it all the way home. Very impressive. Thanks. "
– Ellie Toy, Schools Program Coordinator, CT Storytelling Center
"Great presentation the other night. You do your father - and history - great honor."
- Bruce Marcus, Feature Coordinator, Story Space, Cambridge, MA


Running time: About 45 minutes. Can be followed by discussion with the audience, which often gets quite lively.

Suitable Audiences: High School and up. Has been told at libraries, veterans' groups, retirement communities, storytelling series, and other venues; there are probably some possibilities I have never thought of. Contains some salty language and obviously a good deal of violence, though the violence is not very graphic.

Fees: Negotiable. Contact Arnie regarding your specific situation.

Contact Info

Arnie Pritchard, 19 Colony Road
New Haven, CT 06511
203-624-2520 /  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.