A! Magazine for the Arts

Tricia Matthews, Sarah Laughland, Jenna Haimes, Mary Lucy Bivins and Annie Simpson perform a tune from "Sister Act," which comes to Barter's Gilliam Stage during the summer. (Photo by Billie Wheeler)

Tricia Matthews, Sarah Laughland, Jenna Haimes, Mary Lucy Bivins and Annie Simpson perform a tune from "Sister Act," which comes to Barter's Gilliam Stage during the summer. (Photo by Billie Wheeler)

Barter Theatre announces its new season lineup

December 27, 2017

During the season announcement, members of Barter Theatre's resident acting company performed assorted songs and scenes from the upcoming season.

"Our 2018 season has a heartfelt sense of unity," says Producing Artistic Director Richard Rose. "We hold our theater as a place that we can all gather, where everyone is welcome, where everyone is equal, and where everyone has a voice to share together and explore the very core of our humanity. We want everyone who comes to feel welcome, have a good time and leave wanting to come back for more."

Barter Theatre's 2018 season begins in February on the Gilliam Stage with "Bright Star," a bluegrass musical. The show is a sweeping tale of love and redemption set against the rich backdrop of the American South in the 1920s and "40s.

"In The Heat of the Night" begins in April. It's 1962. A hot August night lies heavy over the small town of Argo, Alabama. The local police discover a dead white man and arrest a black stranger named Virgil Tibbs. They soon find out their suspect is a homicide detective from California, who is the only hope for solving the murder.

"A Facility For Living" is on Stage II in February. For the residents of Federal Nursing Home #273, a penitentiary converted into a senior center, every day is a monotonous cycle of pills, old Ronald Reagan movies and mandatory bedtimes, all overseen by the killjoy head nurse who has embraced her inner Nurse Ratched. A new resident arrives to shake things up.

"Richard III" opens on Stage II in March. Shakespeare's classic is adapted by Katy Brown.

The summer brings "Sister Act" to the Gilliam Stage in May. A woman hiding in a convent helps her fellow sisters find their voices as she rediscovers her own.

"Steel Magnolias" hits the Gilliam Stage in June. Experience the tales of six women who gather under the dryers at Truvy's Beauty Salon to share gossip, laughter, recipes and beauty secrets.

"Maytag Virgin" comes to Stage II in May. In this Southern tale, a relationship that begins as a coincidental friendship becomes an unexpected journey of self-discovery and healing.

"The Lemonade Stand" begins in July. Garret Miller is having a midlife crisis and opens a lemonade stand on the street in front of his upscale suburban house. Does the American dream still exist?

"Madame Buttermilk," returns to Stage II in June. Country music meets opera at the state fair.

"Ain't Misbehavin'" opens on the Gilliam Stage in August. The joint is jumping with the new swing beat to the music of the inimitable Thomas "Fats" Waller, who rose to international fame during the Golden Age of the Cotton Club.

"Singin' in the Rain," begins in September on Gilliam Stage. "Make "Em Laugh," "You Are My Lucky Star," "You Were Meant for Me," "All I Do is Dream of You" and "Singin' in the Rain" are but a few of the songs you'll hear.

Charles Dickens' "Great Expectations," adapted by Catherine Bush, begins in September. Pip is plucked from obscurity by the wealthy and decaying Miss Havisham, changing his life forever.

"Sally McCoy" is on Stage II in September. The winner of Barter's Appalachian Festival of Plays and Playwrights, is set in the midst of the first violent event of the Hatfield and McCoy feud.

"Wait Until Dark" opens on Stage II in October. A blind, yet capable, woman, is imperiled by a trio of men in her apartment.

"The Bridges of Madison County" opens in October. Based on the best-selling novel, a forbidden love affair between a photographer and a housewife changes them forever.

The Christmas season features "Elf: The Musical" on the Gilliam Stage and "Wooden Snowflakes" and "The Santaland Diaries" on Stage II.

The Barter Players season for young audiences includes "Aesop's Fables," "Alice in Wonderland," "Billy, Goat, Gruff: The Musical," "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe," "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" and '"Twas the Night Before Christmas."