It’s Show Time!

Abingdon’s Barter Theatre kicks off the 2017 season.

The 2017 season at Barter Theatre promises a roster of crowd-pleasers starting off Feb. 23 with Mamma Mia! The storied company will then present Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream Apr. 13 – May 13 and Footloose on May 20 – Aug. 12.

Later in the season, don’t miss Friendly’s Fire, written by John Patrick Bray, the winner of last

year’s Appalachian Festival of Plays and Playwrights. The theater will host the 17-year-old festival again in 2017 (check their website for announcements; they are now accepting submissions).

Throughout the year, Barter Theatre will also host a number of musical artists, including the band Mandolin Orange from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, on Jan. 20.

Lending to the success of the nearly-200-year-old theater, in 2012, Barter unveiled a newly renovated and expanded lobby. Its unique neon doors, made by local artist D.R. Mullins, provided a blazing blend of modern art that moves the beloved venue into the next century, according to associate director Nick Piper. And yet, notes Richard Rose, now in his 24th year as the theater’s producing artistic director, the space is “not so modern that the historic is lost.” It was an important moment for the theater, which continues to draw more than 160,000 visitors a year. Marquee actors, including Frances Fisher, Kevin Spacey and Wayne Knight, as well as the late Patricia Neal, Larry Linville and Gary Collins, earned their chops on the Barter stage. It was also a proving ground for James Burrows, the creative force behind hit TV shows like “Cheers,” “Frasier” and “Will and Grace.” Piper says, “I think it’s neat this theater … has influenced so many people who have come through here—Gregory Peck or Ned Beatty or Ernest Borgnine or all these other guys who went on and did many other things.”

Find the full schedule of events online and purchase tickets at BarterTheatre.com


And for a chance to win four tickets to any show this season, be sure to look for our contest: Twitter.com/VirginiaLiving

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