"Footloose: The Musical" Presented by barter Theatre

“One of the most explosive movie musicals to burst onto the stage in recent memory!” —Barter Theatre
Photo from Barter Theatre

News Release

Footloose Cuts Loose in Abingdon

Abingdon, Va.— Have you been working too hard? Is time just holding you down? You need to cut footloose with the cast of Barter Theatre’s “Footloose: The Musical.”

“Footloose: The Musical” is based on Dean Pitchford’s original 1998 screenplay and adapted for stage by Pitchford and Walter Bobbie. Several hits of the 1980s are featured in the musical including: Bonnie Tyler’s “Holding Out for a Hero,” Deniece Williams’ “Let’s Hear It for the Boy,” Kenny Loggins’ “Footloose” and “Almost Paradise” by Ann Wilson and Mike Reno.

“Footloose: The Musical” follows the story of Ren, a teenage boy who moves from Chicago to a small, conservative town. The town has strict laws surrounding music and dancing, which Ren rebels against throughout the show. He decides what the local high school needs is a dance to prove to the town authorities that music and dance should be celebrated.

In the course of the musical, Ren falls in love with the local Reverend’s daughter who also opposes the town’s laws. The two work to prove to her father that dancing should be allowed in the town.

Josh Levinson, a resident actor at Barter Theatre, will play Willard Hewitt in Barter’s production. His character is best friends with Ren.

“I love how the character Ren McCormack is so unafraid to be himself, even when he knows others around him don't agree or approve,” Levinson said. “There is a fire in him that cannot be put out, no matter what. That level of confidence is extremely vital to a person's well-being, and a wonderful layer to the ‘Footloose’ theme.”

Levinson says the cast includes many members of Barter’s Resident Acting Company and the Barter Players, but there will be several new actors as well.

The musical will run from May 20 until Aug. 12 on Barter’s Gilliam Stage. Showings will be held primarily Wednesdays through Sundays with select Tuesday showings.

A full list of show times and available tickets can be found on Barter’s website. Tickets may also be bought at Barter Theatre’s box office before or on the day of any showing as long as they are available.

“With the many spectacular performances, the catchy music that will get your feet tapping and the fantastic dancing, ‘Footloose’ at Barter is simply not a show to miss,” said Levinson. “You'll want to get your tickets now, because they're selling fast.”

Photo by Jason Riedy

Fast Facts

• Barter Theatre’s Gilliam Stage

• 127 West Main Street, Abingdon, Virginia 24212

• May 20-Aug. 12

• Individual dates and times at https://www.bartertheatre.com/shows/footloose-the-musical/20161202155448893.

• “Footloose: The Musical” is a 1998 musical based on Dean Pitchford’s original screenplay and adapted for stage by Pitchford and Walter Bobbie.

• “Footloose” follows a small, Midwest town where the teenagers are forbidden to dance and listen to rock and roll by law. When a new boy, Ren McCormack, comes to town, he attempts to change the minds of the townspeople and change the law.

• Featuring 1980s songs, such as “Almost Paradise,” “Holding Out for a Hero,” “Let’s Hear it for the Boy” and “Footloose.”

• Tickets start at $20 and can be bought online or at the Barter Theatre box office.

• Gilliam Stage holds up to 506 visitors and was opened in 1933 for Barter Theatre’s first show. The theater is wheelchair accessible.

• Barter Theatre began in the 1930s during the Great Depression to allow people to see productions by bartering goods like produce and animals. This created the idea of “ham for Hamlet” trading and is the reason for the theater’s name.

• Today, Barter hosts “Barter Days” where admission can be bought by donations of food to a local pantry.

• Season sponsors include Mountain States Health Alliance, Eastman Credit Union, Food City, Meade Tractor, and The United Company.

Photo by Raina Wiseman
“With the many spectacular performances, the catchy music that will get your feet tapping and the fantastic dancing, ‘Footloose’ at Barter is simply not a show to miss.” —Josh Levinson, resident actor

Social Media Release

News Facts

• May 20-Aug. 12

• Gilliam Stage, Barter Theatre, 127 West Main Street, Abingdon, Virginia 24212

• Musical numbers feature 1980s hits such as “Almost Paradise,” “Holding Out for a Hero,” “Let’s Hear it for the Boy,” and “Footloose.”

• Based on a true story

• Tickets available online or at the box office

• 127 W. Main Street, Abingdon, Virginia, 24210

Quotations

“One of the most explosive movie musicals to burst onto the stage in recent memory!” —Barter Theatre

“With the many spectacular performances, the catchy music that will get your feet tapping and the fantastic dancing, ‘Footloose’ at Barter is simply not a show to miss. You'll want to get your tickets now, because they're selling fast.” —Josh Levinson, resident actor

Multimedia

Related Links

About the Theater

Located in Abingdon, Virginia, Barter Theatre began in the 1930s during the Great Depression to allow people to see stage productions by bartering goods like produce and animals for tickets. This created the idea of “ham for Hamlet” trading, and it is the reason for the theater’s name.

Robert Porterfield of Washington County, Tennessee, created Barter Theatre based on this idea of bartering. Porterfield was an actor himself, and was even praised by President John F. Kennedy for his work at the theater.

Robert L. McKinney’s novel “If You Like Us, Talk About Us,” is a biography of Porterfield’s career. Now, before shows are performed at Barter, directors often tell the audience, “If you like us, talk about us by posting on social media or telling your friends,” in homage to the founder.

The theater was built in 1830. It was originally a church, but the building has been remodeled several times. He opened it in 1933, and tickets were sold at 35 cents. If people did not have money, they could trade something of equal value for admission.

The theater was designated as the “State Theater of Virginia” in 1946. A historic marker is located near the theater, which details the origins.

Several famous actors have been on Barter Theatre’s stage. Tony award winner Elizabeth Wilson; Gregory Peck, who played alongside Audrey Hepburn in “Roman Holiday;” and Wayne Knight from “Jurassic Park” are a few of Barter’s alumni.

Today, monetary payment is required, but Barter Theatre’s legacy is continued. It is home to many resident actors and production workers.

Barter reaches out to the community by allowing field trips to be taken to shows, hosting matinee performances for students, holding special performances for children and hosting the Young Playwrights Festival each year to feature creative high school students’ work.

Barter Theatre features plays and musicals year-round on its two stages, Gilliam Stage and Barter Stage II. The 2017 spring season included “Mamma Mia!,” “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “Six Dance Lessons In Six Weeks” and “Uncanny Valley.”

The summer season will feature “The Savannah Sipping Society,” “Footloose: The Musical,” “The Cottage,” “Leaving Iowa” and “Million Dollar Quartet.”

Tickets for all Barter productions may be purchased on the theater’s website or at the box office located at 127 W. Main Street, Abingdon, Virginia. The box office is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays from 1 to 5 p.m.

Contact

Raina E. Wiseman

Barter Theatre, advertising representative

wisemanr@etsu.edu

Everybody cut footloose!

Created By
Raina Wiseman
Appreciate

Credits:

Created with images by Southern Foodways Alliance - "Barter Theater in Abingdon, VA" • Jason Riedy - "Awaiting the Latin Ballet of Virginia"

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.