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By William Shakespeare

In conjunction with Shakespeare in American Communities, The Barter Players Encore Company brings you quite arguably the best play in the English language. Each student matinee will have a brief introductory workshop, a two Act performance, and a brief follow-up workshop. Designed by Barter's Project REAL, the workshops help connect students with the language and story of Othello. It is our goal to become a link between students' real lives and Shakespeare's incredible stories. 

Othello, a general in the Venetian army, confronts racism, love, jealousy, betrayal, revenge and repentance as 'the Moor of Venice' in this classic tale of tragedy. Does true love bind Othello to his beautiful wife Desdemona, or can Iago, an unfaithful ensign, tear them apart? Will their love stand the test of time or fall to suspicion and deceit? 

Opens Mar 1

Click HERE for free Othello study guide.

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My Imaginary Pirate

By Catherine Bush

Jesse McCall has moved to a new town and is having trouble making friends at school.  But Jesse isn’t lonely; he’s too busy going on adventures with his imaginary pirate, the Terrible One-Eyed Jack. Jesse and One-Eyed Jack are determined to find the buried treasure, but run into all sorts of obstacles on the way. Everything works out in the end--and with a little help from his Dad and One-Eyed Jack, Jesse comes to realize that friendship is the greatest treasure of them all. 

Opens Apr 12

Study guide coming soon!

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Charlotte's Web

Adapted by Joseph Robinette from E.B. White's beloved book

Often called “the best children’s book of all time,” Charlotte’s Web occupies a special place in the hearts of young and old alike. A tiny pig named Wilbur is saved from an untimely death by a little girl and taken to live in her uncle’s barn. In the barn, Wilbur meets many wonderful friends, the best of whom is Charlotte, a kindly spider who takes it upon herself to save Wilbur’s life yet again. Experience the joy and the wonder of this beautiful story of friendship at Barter Theatre.

Opens May 3

Study guide coming soon!

Tickets Info

Cry Wolf!

By Catherine Bush

A hilarious mash-up of all your favorite childhood stories. The Big Bad Wolf is on the loose, and it takes Little Red Riding Hood, the Three Little Pigs, Little Bo Peep, and a host of other famous characters to stop him in his tracks. Filled with unexpected twists and turns, this show is certain to delight the entire family.

Opens Jun 7

Study guide coming soon!

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The Princess and the Pea

Adapted by Catherine Bush from the fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen

The Queen wants her son, Prince Harold, to marry, but Harold has yet to find a princess whom he can love. Then the beautiful maiden Marigold appears at the castle door, and Harold realizes he has met his match. But can Marigold pass the test Harold devises and detect the pea placed under her mattress?  Will she be able to prove to the world that she is truly a princess? A fun twist on a classic fairy tale.

Opens Jun 28

Study guide coming soon!

Tickets Info

Robin Hood

By Catherine Bush

Robin Hood and his band of Merry Men are determined to save their countrymen from the clutches of the wicked Prince John. One day when robbing from the rich to give to the poor, Robin meets the beautiful Maid Marian who is being forced to marry the prince. Can Robin rescue her before it’s too late? Join us for an action packed adventure through Sherwood Forest as we relive this famous English legend.

Opens Jul 19

Study guide coming soon!

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The Giver

Adapted by Eric Coble from Lois Lowry's book

Jonas' world is under control and safe. There is no war or fear or pain. There are also no choices. Every person is assigned a role in the community. But when Jonas turns 12, he is chosen for special training from The Giver—to receive and keep the memories of the community. Now Jonas will learn the truth about life—and the hypocrisy of his safe world. Through this astonishing and moving adaptation, discover what it means to grow up, to grow wise, and to take control of your own destiny. 

Opens Oct 4

Study guide coming soon!

Tickets Info

All I Want for Christmas is my Two Front Teeth

By Catherine Bush

Lively Lucy Lespree is overjoyed when she is assigned the “whistle solo” in her school’s upcoming Christmas pageant. Then tragedy strikes! Two weeks before the show, Lucy loses her two front teeth!  Although she is unable to whistle a note, Lucy is determined not to lose her solo to archrival Anna Lori Pringle. Come join this exuberant seven-year-old and her friends as they embark on a Christmas adventure that will fill the whole family with holiday cheer!

Opens Nov 29

Study guide coming soon!

Barter Players


Katy Brown, Artistic Director of The Barter Players

Barrett Guyton, Associate Director of The Barter Players


Give a child an experience they will never forget.

The Barter Players are a group of professional artists who perform world-class theatre for young audiences.

The troupe presents high-energy and original productions that capture the imagination of today's youth while providing the best in the classic literature and beloved story adaptations.

In the grand tradition of Barter Theatre, The Barter Players perform with a unique combination of education and entertainment, plus the commitment to bring world-class theatre to young people of all ages and backgrounds.

The Barter Players perform at Barter Theatre in Abingdon, VA each April through December. Then, during January, February and March, The Players go on tour, performing at schools all over the Eastern seaboard. Click here for more information on School Tours.

Thank you to The Barter Players Season Sponsors
Season Sponsor: Alpha Natural Resources
Season Media Sponsor: Blue Ridge PBS and abc19 WKPT

On stage now

Get tickets

Book a field trip for your students
(276) 619-5406
Read more about field trips to Barter

Resources for teachers

Download free study guides for The Barter Players shows

Book a touring production for your school
(276) 619-3347
Read more about The Barter Players on tour

Audition for The Barter Players

Contracts are for 15 months and last from May until August of the following year. We also have 4 summer Barter Players whose contracts are from May to August in a single year. We hold an audition at Barter each December, auditions in Northeast Tenessee in February and attend UPTA Memphis each year. For more information about what it's like to be a Barter Player email Katy Brown.

View Barter Opportunities

Meet The Barter Players

The Barter Players are a group of young actors from all over the country who are dedicated to growing as artists by bringing the best and bravest theatre to the young people of this region.

Student Matinees

Student Matinees

Our Student Matinee Program features Barter Theatre’s Resident Acting Company in world-class plays and musicals chosen especially for students. The Barter Players also perform shows especially for students at Barter or at your school when they tour during part of the year.

Student Matinees and The Barter Players productions are built to go hand-in-hand with school testing curriculum requirements, and we offer free, downloadable study guides, which include questions, activities and vocabulary to help prepare your students for the show. Material correlates with specific state testing curricula.


Student Matinee Sponsor:

Appalachian Power

Bristol Office Supply

Dominion Foundation


BAE Systems

Bank of Marion

Student Matinees Right Side

To find out information about any of these programs and to book your student group's reservations today, contact Group Sales.
Special rates for student groups are available!

Student Matinee Shows

The Barter Player Shows

Meet The Barter Players

The Barter Players are a group of young actors from all over the country who are dedicated to growing as artists by bringing the best and bravest theatre to the young people of this region.

The Barter Players on Youtube
The Barter Players on Facebook

Angie Fisher

Sean Michael Flattery (Encore Player)

Jenna Haimes

James Hendley

Terrance Jackson (Encore Player)

Sam McCalla (Encore Player)

Natalie Riegel (Encore Player)

Julie Scroll (Encore Player)

Kelly Strand (Encore Player)

Jeff Sundheim

Michael Vine

Sarah Vishnev

On Tour

Each January through March The Barter Players tours the East Coast with high energy and original productions that capture the imagination, intelligence and sophistication of today's youth while providing the best in the classic literature and beloved story adaptation.

The Barter Players Touring Schedule 2016

View the 2016 Players Tour Brochure 

 My Imaginary Pirate 

by Catherine Bush 

for Kindergarten to 6th grade 

Click Here to view the Study Guide for My Imaginary Pirate

 Jesse McCall is having trouble making friends at his new school, but in spite of that, Jesse isn’t lonely—he’s too busy going on adventures with his imaginary pirate, the Terrible One-Eyed Jack. 

Jesse and One-Eyed Jack are determined to find the buried treasure, but they discover trouble along the way when the outlaw pirate, Red Legs Ricky, steals their treasure map! A high-seas adventure ensues, and Jesse soon realizes that friendship is the greatest treasure of all. This is a heartwarming story that shows the power of imagination. 

 “My audiences always enjoy these performances and beg for more. As always, working with The Barter Players is a superior experience.” 

Jettie Baker Center, Clintwood, Va. 

 A Wrinkle in Time 

adapted by John Glore from Madeline L’Engle’s novel 

for 3rd grade and up

Click Here to view the Study Guide for A Wrinkle in Time

 On a dark and stormy night, the eccentric Mrs. Whatsit arrives at the home of Meg Murray, a tomboy who doesn’t fit in at her high school. Meg’s scientist father vanished more than two years ago under mysterious circumstances. 

With the aide of Mrs. Whatsit and her friends, Meg and her gifted brother, Charles Wallace, are transported through time and space on a mission to rescue their father from frightening forces that hold him prisoner on another planet. John Glore’s wildly theatrical adaptation brings this acclaimed story magically to life. 

 “Amazing!! They were professional and engaged our students during the play, but also took time to greet them. Thank you for providing a quality show!” 

Lincoln Elementary School, Kingsport, Tenn. 


adapted by Catherine Bush from Sophocles 

for 7th grade and up 

Click Here to view the Study Guide for Antigone

 Antigone’s beloved brother, Polynices, lies dead on the field of battle, accused of treachery and denied a hero’s burial. Antigone’s uncle, King Creon, has decreed that anyone caught trying to bury the traitor will be put to death. Will Antigone defy her uncle and risk her life to pay tribute to her brother’s memory? Don’t miss this chance to see Sophocles’ ancient tragedy brought to life in this beautiful production by The Barter Players. 

 “On a scale of 1 to 10, it was a 20! Your tour and shows are perfect. The performances are the most anticipated day of the school year.” 

Lenoir City Elementary School, Lenoir City, Tenn. 


More Information

Free Study Guides

All of our productions are built to go hand-in-hand with your school’s SOL or TCAP curriculum. See under each production to download the free study guide. 

Classroom Workshops

Classroom workshops may be scheduled independently or following a performance. Workshops involve young people creating theatre from their own life experiences and are adapted to the age level of the students. We show them how they can do it just like us! Also ask about our actor talkback sessions immediately following performances.


Fees are negotiable, but we think you will find that we charge considerably less than other theatres of such professional quality. We strive to be affordable to anyone who desires a Barter Players performance. Further discounts are given for block bookings in your area.


For information on a show or workshop contact Barrett Guyton at

276-619-3347 or e-mail

Learn more about The Barter Players on Tour

Watch our video

Barter Players Artistic Directors

Artisitic Director of The Barter Players

Katy Brown is proud to have served audiences at Barter Theatre since 1998 as a director, choreographer, acting coach, dramaturge, actor and administrator. Katy has directed over seventy professional productions, including The 39 Steps, Violet, Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, Dead Man’s Cell Phone, A Thousand Cranes, The Foreigner and world premieres such as The Quiltmaker; Doubting Thomas and Don’t Cry for Me, Margaret Mitchell. She also directed the production of Of Mice and Men that was seen in the fall of 2009 all over the United States on Barter Theatre's national tour. In addition to serving as the artistic director of The Barter Players, she is head of casting for Barter Theatre.










Associate Director of The Barter Players

Barrett Guyton is thrilled spend his year at Barter! A proud alumnus of the Barter Players and the Barter Players Encore Company, he now serves as the Associate Director of the Barter Players. Barrett graduated from the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa with a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and in Health Care Management. He has directed the Barter Players’ productions of A Wrinkle in TimeThe Jungle Book, and The Velveteen Rabbit. Favorite Barter acting credits include: Love, Sex, & the IRSThe Wizard of Oz, and A Christmas Story. Favorite Player acting credits include: Bridge to TerabithiaHamletMacbeth, and Frosty.