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Volume 26, Number 2 — February 2019

The Bard of Barter: Rick Rose

Rick Rose is Barter Theatre's producing artistic director.
Rick Rose is Barter Theatre's producing artistic director.

Rick Rose Celebrates 20 Years at Virginia's State Theatre

December 28, 2011

Barter Theatre in Abingdon, Va. is a significant economic, cultural and educational force in our region. At the helm is Richard Rose, who is celebrating his 20th season with Barter, only the third artistic director in the theatre's illustrious history.

Under Rose's leadership, Barter has become one of the leading regional theatres in the country when it comes to developing and producing new work. For the past 10 years, Barter's Appalachian Festival of Plays and Playwrights (AFPP) has given voice to dozens of new works that have gone on to full production here and in theatres across the country. Capitalizing on that success, in 2011 Barter launched The Shaping of America series to develop new works based on history.

Rose was named artistic director in October 1992. Since that time, attendance has grown from 42,000 to more than 160,000 annual patrons. Significant capital improvements have also been made, including renovations to both theatres, addition of the Barter Café at Stage II and the dramatic improvements made to Porterfield Square in 2006.

Before launching Barter Theatre's 2012 season, Rose took time to answer a few questions.

Does it feel like you've been at Barter for 20 years?