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Volume 25, Number 1 — January 2018

Arts Calendar

Barter actor presents one-man show to benefit Parkinson's research

Date(s):  January 19 - 21, 2018
Venue: Barter Theatre
133 West Main Street
Abingdon, VA 24212

ABINGDON, VA. – Barter Theatre resident actor Nick Koesters presents a special three-night production of "Side Effects May Include" to benefit research for Parkinson's Disease. The show is performed at Barter Theatre's Stage II Friday, Jan. 19 at 7 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 20 at 2 p.m., and Sunday, Jan. 21 at 3 p.m.

The one-man play, co-written by author and stand-up comedian Marc Jaffe and Broadway playwright Eric Coble, is based on Jaffe's real life experiences with his wife Karen, who was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease in 2007. It is the story of how Parkinson's affected their lives, the choices they made in dealing with the disease, and the literal and figurative side effects of those choices. Since Karen's diagnosis, the Jaffes have raised over $1million for the Michael J. Fox Foundation through their nonprofit organization Shaking With Laughter (

Nick Koesters, a member of Barter's Resident Acting Company since 2011, has a passion for using theater to educate the public. While living in Cleveland, Ohio, he was part of Kaiser Permanente's Educational Theatre Program where he acted in, directed and produced a number of theatrical productions on a myriad of health-related issues that were performed in schools, community centers and colleges. He also worked with the Permanente Medical Group to develop and implement best practices techniques to improve doctor/patient communications.

Koesters performed in the original production of "Side Effects May Include" in Cleveland and is excited to share it again with the Barter Theatre community. "My wife and I both have family members who have been diagnosed with Parkinson's. With this show, I want to bring together a whole community of individuals and families dealing with Parkinson's, support groups, and organizations working to educate, research and treat the disease. I want to help bring awareness to the community at large and provide a setting where support systems in the region can come together with families like ours whose lives are directly affected by this challenging disease."

Booths will be set up inside Barter's Stage II café before and after each production to provide attendees with information about Parkinson's Disease, facilitate discussions, share stories, discuss advances in research and provide support for anyone who is affected by Parkinson's Disease. Any groups interested in setting up a booth can contact Nick Koesters at

"Side Effects May Include" is presented by Shaking with Laughter with the generous support of Barter Theatre. Tickets are $5 each (though additional donations are accepted and appreciated) and can be purchased in advance by calling the Barter Theatre box office at 276-628-3991 or visiting All proceeds benefit Shaking With Laughter.

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