Past Performances

Artwork for Five Hundred Nights in the Theatre

Five Hundred Nights in the Theatre: Full Circle

Thursday - Saturday, March 24 - 26, 2022, at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday Afternoon, March 27, 2022, at 3 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Theatre at Barton presents “Five Hundred Nights in the Theatre: Full Circle,” a musical revue celebrating the work of Mark Peterson, Director of Music at Barton College. The production scheduled for March 24-26 at 7:30 p.m. and on March 27 at 3 p.m., will feature some of Peterson’s favorite selections from Broadway musicals and Theatre at Barton productions. The performances will be held in the Kennedy Family Theatre on the Barton campus.

“The theme of “Five Hundred Nights in the Theatre” references the amount of time spent in rehearsal and preparation for live theatrical productions, and is a salute to Mark Peterson’s many experiences and dedication to Theatre and a career in music education,” shared Sherry Lee Allen, director of Theatre at Barton.

“In his role as director of music at Barton, Mark has served as conductor of the Barton College/ Wilson Symphony Orchestra, director of the Barton College Choir, and as an instructor of piano,” she added. “He also has served as music director for countless musical productions at Barton College and other locations. He is a wonderful musician, I admire his sense of humor, and I am proud to share a love of music with my esteemed colleague.”

Advance reservations are required. No tickets will be sold at the door. Social distancing will be required at all performances, and face masks will be encouraged but not required. Maximum attendance for each performance will be 70 people.

Tickets for the family-friendly event will be $10 each. Barton faculty, staff, and students will be admitted free; however, donations to support Theatre Educational Workshops for Students will be welcomed.

“The selections for the revue, suggested by Mark, were chosen to convey his sentiments and fond memories, as well as respected composers and/or lyricists,” Allen noted. “We are thrilled to honor Maestro Mark Peterson at this fundraising event, creating an opportunity for students to attend workshops during the academic year and to further their experience and inspiration with Broadway performances.”

Allen will direct and choreograph the musical revue. Performers will include Barton College students, faculty, and alumni. Broadway veteran Dirk Lumbard will also participate in the celebration as a returning guest artist. Costumes and props will be designed by Dorothy Austin-Harrell, with set and lighting by technical director Michael Dornemann. The stage managers will be Jessica Simmons and Kerri Kinard.

About Mark N. Peterson —

Peterson was named Director of Music at Barton College in 2001. Since his appointment, he has directed more than 50 concerts with the Barton College/Wilson Symphony Orchestra and has brought dozens of extraordinary guest artists to several Wilson area venues.

A native of Massachusetts, Peterson holds degrees from Boston University and the University of New Hampshire, and served for many years on the faculties of Bradford College and the University of Massachusetts Lowell. At Barton College, he also directs the college choir and has served as Music Director for numerous college musical theatre productions.

Peterson also serves as Director of Music at the Parish of St. Therese in Wilson, where he provides his congregation with a “well regulated” music program, which includes a steady diet of Bach organ music. During his time away from campus and church, Peterson enjoys practicing, composing, lawn maintenance, and studying German.

Artwork for Christmas Cabaret

Christmas Cabaret

Friday, December 3, 2021, at 7:30 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Tis the season to be jolly as Theatre at Barton presents a “Christmas Cabaret.” This festive program offers stories, traditions, and some of your favorite holiday music performed by students, alumni, faculty, and members of the campus family. Christmas carolers, dancing elves, and talented performers share songs of joy, inspiration, and love during the most wonderful time of the year.

Pride of Doves logo with stylized dove artwork

Nightfall with Edgar Allan Poe

Thursday - Saturday, November 11 - 12, 2021, at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday afternoon, November 14, 2021, at 3:00 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Travel to the darkest corners inside Edgar Allan Poe’s mind, as four of his favorite tales are blended together to create a chilling excursion. Fall under the spell of “The Raven,” “The Fall of House of Usher,” “The Pit and the Pendulum,” and the “Tell-Tale Heart.” These familiar stories and poems are brought to life in a theatrical adaptation that will make your skin crawl, leave you frozen in fear, and questioning his madness. Perhaps you should check your heartbeat at the door.

The talented cast of Barton actors includes Luke Eason, Allysa Krasovich, Jordan Peartree, Erica Patterson, Justin Trent and Will Unruh.

Michael Dornemann, set and lighting designer, is responsible for all technical elements of the production, and costume designer Dorothy Austin-Harrell will oversee wardrobe and all properties. Nick Leek is sound designer and operator, with Jessica Simpson as stage manager.

Pride of Doves logo with stylized dove artwork

Coop's Homecoming

Thursday - Saturday, April 8 - 10, 2021, at 7:30 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Barton College alumnus Zachery Rayburn first debuted a staged reading of his original musical in the 2017 New Works Festival in the Kennedy Family Theatre. Coop’s Homecoming follows the reunion of four friends, as they struggle with the loss of one of their own—a fallen hero—and the profound impact he had on their lives. This next step in presenting a formal theatrical piece offers additional music by Rayburn and Jim Grant with further exploration of the United States Marine, his family, and friends as they recall, celebrate, and relive moments of his life.

Pride of Doves logo with stylized dove artwork

Student-Produced Works

Friday - Saturday, March 26 - 27, 2021, at 7:30 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Barton College authors and playwrights have submitted original works—for students, by students. These creative, 10-minute plays, stories, and poems are fully produced on stage in the Kennedy Family Theatre, showcasing work from student authors: Sarah Maragh, Hunter Bozelle, Caroline Leegins, Luke Eason, Suman Kirti and Morgan Tripp. Spoken-word participants (Jordan Peartree ) and other actors will also have the opportunity to share their voice in the spotlight, while other students take on backstage roles in running crew, management, design, and other essential technical elements. Barton College faculty members Sherry Lee Allen, Dorothy Austin-Harrell, and Michael Dornemann will supervise presentations. Come celebrate this performance series. The play's the thing!

Pride of Doves logo with stylized dove artwork

Pride of Doves

Thursday - Saturday, November 12 - 14, 2020, at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday afternoon, November 15, 2020, at 3 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Theatre at Barton is excited to present Pride of Doves by Doug Robinson. This dramatic production examines systemic racial, social and criminal justice issues and offers a thought-provoking message to the audience regarding a responsible approach to ending the cycle of injustice. The playwright is actively working with our staff and students to prepare this abstract theatrical production for its North Carolina premiere. Talkback sessions with the cast and team will occur immediately following the shows.

Photo - The Importance of Being Earnest

The Miracle Worker

Thursday - Saturday, February 20 - 22, 2020, at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday afternoon, February 23, 2020, at 3 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

This dramatic play written by William Gibson in based on Helen Keller’s autobiography The Story of my Life. It gives a true account of the relationship between devoted teacher Anne Sullivan and blind, deaf, and mute Helen as they navigate a world of darkness, while learning of hope and sharing triumphant moments over immeasurable challenges.

Photo - The Importance of Being Earnest

Christmas Cabaret

Saturday, December 7, 2019, at 7:30 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Journey back to a time when radio was the best form of news and entertainment. Meet some of the characters who work, sing, and play at the WKFT radio station. You are sure to hear some of your favorite holiday tunes sung live "on the air" with our talented studio musicians. Celebrate the season by bringing a donation for Toys for Tots and your admission is free!

Photo - The Importance of Being Earnest


Thursday - Saturday, November 7 - 9, 2019, at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, November 10, 2019, at 3 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Written by John-Michael Tebelak and based on the gospel of Matthew, Godspell shares parables, philosophies, and teachings set to lyrics and music composed by Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Pippin). Don’t miss this pop-rock musical that is full of high-powered singing, dancing, and talented individuals who learn the value of community with a sense of humor and an open heart.

Photo - The Importance of Being Earnest

A Midsummer Night's Dream

Friday, September 27, 2019, at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, September 28, 2019, at 3 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, September 29, 2019, at 3 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Barton College partners with Theatre Raleigh to present the classical tale, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, in a spirited and contemporary production that takes the fear out of Shakespeare. Come take part in the “mischief and merriment” that is fun for the entire family to enjoy.

Photo - The Importance of Being Earnest

The Importance of Being Earnest

Friday – Saturday, February 21 - 23, 2019, at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, February 24, 2019, at 3 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

In 1895, Irish playwright, poet, essayist, journalist, and novelist Oscar Wilde, notorious as much for his razor-sharp wit as for his social excesses, published The Importance of Being Earnest, a play that he subtitled A Trivial Comedy for Serious People. This play would go on to be the most widely read, produced, and critically acclaimed of his prolific, though sadly short, career and life.

Wilde is required reading for any student of theatre or English literature. He uniquely propels classic, satirical comedy of manners headlong into 20th century realism, laying a foundation for the next generation of comedy greats including Noel Coward, Neil Simon, Woody Allen, and many others.

Wilde's impact is far-reaching and for many years, we have been looking for the right opportunity to produce this play. The stars aligned for the 2018-2019 season, and Theatre at Barton is honored to be able to present Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest, a play that we subtitle Simply One of the Most Brilliant Comedies of All Time.

Sit back and enjoy; and, as with all great satire, we'll get you in the end!


Oh, What a Holy Night!

Friday – Saturday, December 7 – 8, 2018, at 7:30 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Ring in this holiday season at Barton College’s Kennedy Family Theatre with Oh, What a Holy Night, Theatre Raleigh’s very own Christmas cabaret. This evening of festive musical entertainment, sponsored by Theatre at Barton and produced by Lauren Kennedy, will feature a wonderfully talented professional cast of actors, singers, dancers, and musicians. This show is sure to delight the entire family and will brighten our campus for two evenings only, Friday and Saturday, December 7-8, at 7:30 p.m.

Once again Theatre at Barton will be partnering with Toys for Tots during the Christmas season; and tickets for this show are free with the donation of a new, unwrapped toy. Without the toy donation, tickets will be $10 per person at the door.

Come and experience the excitement of Oh, What a Holy Night – our 2018 Christmas Cabaret!


Into the Woods

Thursday – Saturday, November 8 – 10, 2018, at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, November 11, 2018, at 3 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Take a cow as white as milk, a cape as red as blood, hair as yellow as corn, a slipper as pure as gold; and add a sinister wolf, a raging giant, a pair of lovelorn princes, and a handful of magic beans. Shake vigorously, and you just may have one of the most beloved musicals of our generation! Theatre at Barton College is proud to present the musical masterpiece Into the Woods by Stephen Sondheim. Barton's Artist-in-Residence Sherry Lee Allen directs this outstanding production, which runs for one week only.

You may never look at fairy tales the same way again!


Little Women

Thursday – Saturday, April 19 – 21, 2018, at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, April 22, 2018, at 3 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Theatre at Barton is thrilled to present “Little Women,” a contemporary Broadway musical based on the beloved Louisa May Alcott novel. The story of Little Women follows the adventures of the March family, growing up in New England during the American Civil War, contending with career and relationship aspirations, experiencing tremendous joy, and suffering tragic loss.

This award-winning musical by Alan Knee, Mindi Dickstein, and Jason Howland captures this tale in a beautiful adaptation to the stage. Barton’s outstanding cast and creative, inspired direction and design will utilize the Kennedy Family Theatre in fresh, imaginative ways. Our intimate setting provides unparalleled story-telling opportunities, and we are seizing every one of them.


New Works Festival and Student Showcase

Friday – Saturday, February 23 – 24, 2018, at 7 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

The Kennedy Family Theatre is bursting with anticipation as we prepare for a showcase of student-produced projects along with a one-year anniversary and CD-release celebration for Starboy, one of last year’s fine musicals from our New Works Festival. On February 23 – 24 at 7 p.m., we have seniors Courtney Perez and Micheala Howell performing their delightful “Capstone Cabaret” followed by a short series of 10-minute plays directed and performed by Barton students. We wrap up the evenings with a few selections from Starboy, the new musical by Ray Shell and Chris Van Cleave, first heard last year at Barton, then recorded at our Sara Lynn Riley Kennedy Studio and featuring the talents of many students, alumni, faculty, and local Wilson singers. These performances are free to the public and should not be missed! Discussions with the artists involved will follow each performance.

We invite you to join us for the 2018 New Works Festival and Student Showcase!


A Christmas Cabaret

Friday - Saturday, December 8 - 9, 2017, at 7:30 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Theatre at Barton closes out the 2017 calendar year with an encore presentation of last year's holiday hit, A Christmas Cabaret! These performances of classic holiday entertainment will brighten Barton's Kennedy Family Theatre stage for two nights only. A Christmas Cabaret will help the whole family ring in the season and promises to be a welcome diversion for our students as they finish with classes and tumble headlong into finals!

Come and join our talented Barton students, faculty, staff, and community members on this festive evening of song, dance, and the occasional shenanigan - and if you have a mind to join in, you will have opportunities! Fun and festive attire is encouraged, but certainly not required.

Come and experience the excitement of A Christmas Cabaret!


Echoes of the War

by J.M. Barrie

Saturday, October 14, 2017, at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday afternoon, October 15, 2017, at 3:00 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

World War I certainly has its share of plays and time-honored epics, but in searching the archives, we discovered an unexpected and delightful gem by renowned playwright and novelist, J.M. Barrie, of Peter Pan fame. Barrie wrote a collection of short one-act plays that he titled Echoes of the War. These inspirational reflections on war and its toll on the human condition are heart-wrenching, touching, witty, and, dare I say, sassy—a combination rarely found together and one that showcases a master at his best.

Theatre at Barton is delighted to offer this rarely performed collection of beautiful short plays in memory of all who fought for freedom and justice in World War I, and as tribute to those who continue that fight today.


My Fair Lady

Thursday - Saturday, April 20 - 22, 2017, at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday afternoon, April 23, 2017, at 3:00 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Barton College launched a concentration in Musical Theatre four years ago. Since that time, Theatre at Barton has developed and showcased some wonderfully talented students, while maintaining a level of excellence almost unheard of with such a young program. This year, we have challenged ourselves to tackle one of the classics of the genre and arguably the most beloved musical of all time, My Fair Lady, adapted from George Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion, with music by Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe.

This beautiful, witty, and, at times, scandalous Cinderella story is rife with social insight and commentary. It concerns Eliza Doolittle, a common, lower-class Cockney flower girl in London, who desires to elevate her social status through speech lessons with Professor Henry Higgins, a phoneticist and prescribed bachelor.

This show is an enormous undertaking for any theatre company and an outstanding benchmark for Barton's theatre program. The music and the dialects are contagious and will most certainly be heard throughout our campus for weeks after the show closes. We could not be more pleased to present My Fair Lady at our Kennedy Family Theatre!


2017 New Works Festival

Thursday - Sunday, February 23 - 26, 2017
Kennedy Family Theatre

One of the most rewarding activities theatre students and professionals have the opportunity to take part in is the development of new material. Each collaborative artist has a stake in the project and an enormous sense of responsibility to the process. Most successful plays and musicals are developed through this type of workshop. It can take years to be ready for professional-level production, but they all start someplace; and, this year, the Kennedy Family Theatre will host an exciting series of staged readings we’re calling the New Works Festival!

During February 23 - 26, we have three unique, new musicals by local and affiliated artists and alumni, as well as an intriguing performance, devised from the remarkable poetry of Sam Ragan. This piece, Sam Ragan, Inside the Poetry, is written and performed by his daughter Talmadge, along with other artists, and will be co-produced by Barton’s English Department.

We are seeking to be "an incubator of creativity." Half of these pieces are being heard for the first time; the others have had previous readings and are in further development. Each performance will be followed by a “talk-back” session, in which the audience will be encouraged to share in the development and discuss the material with the writers and actors.

Performances Times

Thursday, February 23, 7:30 p.m.
Together Again for the First Time
By Mark Steimer
Directed by Mark Steimer

Friday, February 24, 7:30 p.m.
By Ray Shell
Directed by Adam Twiss

Saturday, February 25, 7:30 p.m.
Coop's Homecoming
By Zackery Rayburn
Directed by Sherry Lee Allen

Saturday & Sunday, February 25 & 26, 2:00 p.m.
Sam Ragan, Inside the Poetry
By Sam Ragan and daughter, Talmadge
Directed by Worth Keeter


A Christmas Cabaret

Friday, December 9, 2016, at 7:30 p.m.
Kennedy Family Theatre

Theatre at Barton closes out the 2016 calendar year with a celebration of the season in our first-ever Chistmas Cabaret!  This evening of holiday-themed entertainment takes place on December 9 at 7:30 p.m. in Barton's Kennedy Family Theatre. Sure to delight the young and old alike, A Christmas Cabaret promises to be a welcome diversion for our students as they finish with classes and tumble headlong into their finals!

Come join our talented Barton students, faculty, staff, and community members on this festive evening of song, dance, and the occasional shenanigan - and if you have a mind to join in, you will have opportunities! Fun and festive attire is encouraged, but certainly not required.

Come and experience the excitement of A Christmas Cabaret!


All in the Timing

Thursday - Friday, October 20 - 21, 2016, at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday - Sunday, October 22 - 23, 2016, at 3 p.m.

Since the opening of our Kennedy Family Theatre in 2009, Barton's performing arts programs have had a fitting home to produce and perform high quality material; and each year as we are rehearsing over Homecoming Weekend, I have to break the news to former Stage and Script members and other enthusiastic alumni, that they will have to be satisfied wandering through the building and watching a rehearsal because the timing was not right for mounting a full-scale production in late-October. This year, we challenged ourselves to re-think that possibility; and, indeed, it's all in the aforementioned "timing."

Theatre at Barton follows up our hit musical collaboration with Theatre Raleigh, Million Dollar Quartet, with an outrageous, witty collection of short comedies by award-winning American playwright, David Ives. All in the Timing was first produced in 1993 as six uniquely quirky, situational plays, which were then expanded to 14 plays for a 2013 revival.  We took this marvelous lot, coupled it with David Ives' follow-up, Time Flies, for a collection of 28 short pieces, then set eight equally unique and quirky directors (alumni, faculty, community members) to work reviewing the plays and considering which of the 28 pieces they might direct as part of an outstanding evening of entertainment here at Barton.

The result is an extraordinary, engaging performance that enlists talent from every quadrant of our campus, as well as from our community, a fitting approach to a work of theatre offered for the very first time on Barton's Homecoming Weekend! This show is dedicated to the Stage and Script pioneers, who kept the flame lit for so many years, until we could catch up and craft a program around their vision!

Enjoy this delightful production of All in the Timing!


Million Dollar Quartet

Thursday - Saturday, September 1 - 3, 2016, at 7:30 p.m.

Theatre at Barton is pleased to offer the Tony Award-winning Million Dollar Quartet as our annual, season-opening collaboration with Lauren Kennedy and Theatre Raleigh! This fantastic, juke-box show has been touring the nation and raking in the rave reviews. Theatre Raleigh's outstanding cast will have the Kennedy Family Theatre on Barton's campus rockin' and rollin' for three wild nights! This show will be a treat for all ages, and we can't think of a more enjoyable way to kick off the semester!

Million Dollar Quartet is the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical inspired by the true story of the famed recording session in which Sam Phillips, the "Father of Rock 'n' Roll," brought together icons Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Elvis Presley For one unforgettable night.

On December 4, 1956, history was made when these four young musicians gathered at Sun Records in Memphis for what would be one of the greatest impromptu jam sessions ever. It brings to light the extraordinary story of broken promises, secrets, and the once-in-a-lifetime celebration of four friends that is both poignant and heartwarming. Million Dollar Quartet brings that legendary night to life, featuring a score of rock hits including "Blue Suede Shoes," "Fever," "That's All Right," "Sixteen Tons," "Great Balls of Fire," "Walk the Line," "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On," "Who Do You Love?," "Matchbox," "Folsom Prison Blues," "Hound Dog," and more. This thrilling musical brings you inside the recording studio with four major talents who came together as a red-hot rock 'n' roll band for one unforgettable night.

Don't miss your chance to be a fly on the wall of fame -- at MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET!



By Moliere
Thursday & Saturday, April 21 & 23, 2016, at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday Matinee, April 24, 2016, at 3:00 p.m.

For millennia, theatre has been a principle means of showcasing man’s heroic nature, while exposing his tragic flaws. Since antiquity, theatre and dramatic literature have been rife with satire, providing a generally comedic platform for discourse on our ironic tendency toward self-serving extremes.

As we tumble headlong into a season of political punditry, positioning, and platitudes, what better diversion than one of theatre’s most deliciously scandalous and salacious plays, by arguably the greatest satirist to ever put quill to paper? Theatre at Barton is pleased to present Tartuffe, by Moliere!

Moliere, born Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, premiered Tartuffe in 1664. The resulting outcry from the Archbishop of France closed down the theatre instantly. Only the intercession of King Louis XIV kept Moliere from imprisonment and excommunication.

This bold "sit-com" depicts a well-heeled family, split over the nature of their guest, a priggish, pious, pretender, whose sanctimony is suspect. Exposing this hypocrite for what he is takes cunning and risk, but can it be done before all is lost? You’ll have to come and see for yourself!

This outstanding play provides a wonderful opportunity for both actor and audience to gain exposure to classical, renaissance literature; to recognize that, in our media-rich world, many of the most entertaining and satisfying stories remain simple reflections of the human condition, constant through the centuries.

We invite you to join us and share in this remarkable event ... though you may be risking imprisonment and excommunication!


Peter Pan

Adapted from the novel by J. M. Barrie
Thursday - Saturday, November 12 - 14, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday Matinee, November 15, 2015 at 3:00 p.m.
Thursday - Saturday, November 19 - 21, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.

“All you need is faith, trust, and a little bit of pixie dust.” Let Theatre at Barton and The Playhouse of Wilson take you away to Neverland, for a special co-production of Peter Pan. This classic of 20th century musical theatre opens to the public on Thursday, Nov. 12 at 7:30 p.m., at the Edna E. Boykin Cultural Center on Nash Street in historic downtown Wilson. Evening performances continue through Saturday, Nov. 14, and resume on Thursday, Nov. 19 through Saturday, Nov. 21. An afternoon matinee will be held on Sunday, Nov. 15 beginning at 3 p.m. Tickets are $12 and available at the door, or may be reserved in advance from the Arts Council of Wilson, 124 Nash St. Wilson, (252) 291-4329. For additional information, please contact Adam Twiss, Director of Theatre at Barton College: (252) 399-6484 or

Peter Pan may at first glance seem an unusual fit for Barton,” admitted Twiss. “After all, it is distinctly absent from the cannon of contemporary collegiate theatre. Upon closer inspection, however, we find that it dovetails wonderfully with the artistic goals and instructional missions of both our collegiate program, and that of our well-established community theatre partner, The Playhouse of Wilson. This collaboration provides excellent opportunities, experience, and entertainment for our students and members of our community.”

Barton's Resident Artist-in-Musical Theatre, Sherry Lee Allen, takes the helm as director and choreographer, assisted by Trish Bradshaw, owner of Studio B in Wilson, with musical direction by Mark N. Peterson, Director of Music at Barton and Conductor of the Barton College/Wilson Symphony Orchestra. Allison Dellinger is stage manager, Chris Bernier is both scenic and lighting designer, with Jane Cookson designing costumes, and Michael Johnson designing hair and makeup. Hampton Short is sound designer, and Brittany Argall and Adam Twiss share the properties design. Wilson and Barton's own Jess Jones has taken on the fight choreography and captains the flight team. Many new faces will be seen on the Boykin stage, including Barton freshman Ashlee Keefe as Peter, and Broadway veteran actor Dirk Lumbard as the legendary villain, Captain Hook.

Over the past seven years, Theatre at Barton has undertaken no fewer than two collaborative projects each season. These productions have been held on campus, in downtown Wilson, Rocky Mount, and Raleigh, and have included classical works, contemporary productions, dramas, musicals, and original works.

“The challenges have been many,” continued Twiss, “but the results have been astonishing, and both our students and our community are the better for it. Thank you for your continued support of the arts in downtown Wilson!”

Peter Pan is presented with support of the Arts Council of Wilson.


The Rocky Horror Show

By Richard O’Brien
April 16, 18 - 19, 2015

It is with great (and guilty) pleasure that Theatre at Barton presents The Rocky Horror Show, by Richard O’Brien, to wrap up our successful 2014-2015 season! This romp of a campy, rock and roll classic premiered in 1973 in London’s West End, running there, in Los Angeles, and on Broadway until 1980. Along the way it spawned a cult following, as well as the renowned 1975 film version, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, which is still regularly shown in theatres across the nation and remains the longest running film in history. The show has enjoyed several major international tours and a very successful, star-studded Broadway revival in 2000.

Response to the show has been staggering; we have assembled an incredibly talented group of students and community members, led by director Sherry Lee Allen, our Musical Theatre Artist in Residence. The show crosses generational boundaries (a few other boundaries as well); characters are bold, iconic, and dangerous; the music is dynamic and contagious, and neither Barton College nor Wilson has ever seen its like. The audience will be challenged to check preconceptions at the door and come prepared to join the party; feather boas and fishnet stockings are acceptable fashion for all in attendance!


Hangar Flying: Reflections on War and Baseball

An original play presented by Theatre at Barton
Adapted from the work of Gérard Carl Lange
November 13 – 16, 2014

A unique hallmark of the artistic programming at Barton College might be summed up with the term “collaborative”. Collaboration across disciplines, community and cultural boundaries, and between mentors and students is essential to any successful arts program, and makes for a far more enriching experience for all involved.

Theatre at Barton has consistently been a collaborative partner with many community and professional theatre practitioners and companies; capitalizing on the wealth of knowledge and talent in our region, gleaning for participants in our program, while enhancing the material we offer on our stage.

With Hangar Flying: Reflections on War and Baseball, our theatre program once again embarks on a collaborative effort to adapt an intriguing historical novel to the stage as a world premiere. This book by Barton Associate Professor of Art Gerard Lange is a rich, war-time tapestry, woven from the memoirs and anecdotes of family members both real and imagined. The light-hearted, poignant epic takes us on a journey through World War II and Korean combat, where characters gain insight into culture and personal humanity through a shared international touchstone of baseball.

We invite you to embark on this historical journey and join us at the Kennedy Family Theatre to launch this vital new work!


Crimes of the Heart

A play by Beth Henley
August 28 – 29, 2014

For Mature Audiences (adult subject matter and language)

We hope you will be able to join us to kick off the Theatre at Barton 2014-2015 season and celebrate 10 years of Theatre Raleigh/Hot Summer Nights success!

Since opening our new theatre in 2009, Barton has had the great fortune of working closely with incredible Broadway and regional talent. Through the generosity of our Theatre at Barton family and our co-producers Theatre Raleigh (formerly Hot Summer Nights at the Kennedy), we have been able to mount world and regional premiere plays and musicals, as well as star- studded concerts right here in Downtown Wilson!

This year, we continue the tradition with an encore presentation of Theatre Raleigh’s stellar 10th season finale, Crimes of the Heart, a Pulitzer Prize winning, dark-Southern comedy by renowned playwright Beth Henley.

At the core of this contemporary classic are the three MaGrath sisters, Meg, Babe, and Lenny, who reunite at Old Granddaddy’s home in Hazlehurst, Mississippi. They must collectively contend with recent events that conspire to topple the already dysfunctional lives they lead. Past resentments bubble to the surface in connection to the cadre of intriguing characters and awkward situations they confront … all the while coping with this latest incident that has disrupted their lives.


Two by Two

Presented by Theatre at Barton
April 10 and 13, 2014

The cold-war years following World War II had a remarkable effect on world drama and spawned numerous works, “apocalyptic” in nature. Renowned American playwright Clifford Odets, recognized for metaphorical conflict and fiery, left-wing rhetoric, chose a unique and unexpected approach to this theme; he wrote a heartwarming and outrageously funny retelling of the Noah’s Ark story titled The Flowering Peach. This 1954 play was to be Odets’ last; the work was posthumously adapted into the wonderful musical, Two by Two, by the celebrated team of Richard Rogers (Oklahoma!, The King and I, The Sound of Music, etc.), Martin Charnin (Annie) and Peter Stone (1776, Titanic), and starred Danny Kaye.

Imagine a crotchety, comfortable 600-year-old Noah being informed that he was going to have to build an ark, larger than anything ever conceived of, as a means of saving the human race … not to mention all land animals. Then imagine Noah springing that on his very average, dysfunctional family and encouraging them to assist, in spite of all the grief they receive from the neighbors and the town.

This is where our story begins, and we invite you to join us at the Kennedy Family Theatre to share in the fun, the antics, the enchanting music … and perhaps grab a hammer and pitch in!


Romeo and Juliet

Presented by Theatre at Barton and the Imperial Centre Theatre
November 7 – 10, 2013

It is indeed an honor for any actor of any generation to perform works from the canon of William Shakespeare. Born in 1564 in Stratford-upon-Avon, England, Shakespeare was a successful playwright and a staple in Elizabethan London theatre from 1585 until his retirement to the country in 1613, where he passed away in a most anticlimactic fashion in 1616, leaving the world with a collection of some 38 brilliant dramatic works.

Romeo and Juliet is perhaps the best known and most performed of Shakespeare’s marvelous tragedies. It is the quintessential story of star-crossed lovers who meet an untimely end, leaving the world to mourn their loss and reconsider their own actions that led to the tragedy.

This is a project that we have been eagerly waiting to tackle at Barton; and, this year, we have the opportunity to collaborate with Rocky Mount’s Imperial Centre Theatre to produce our first “touring production” and make this dream a reality.

Join us on this fantastic journey into classic drama … with a contemporary twist!