Barn Theatre Announces 2017 – 71st Season




CONTACT: Penelope Ragtozy



The Barn Theatre, Michigan’s oldest professional summer theatre, under the artistic leadership of Brendan Ragotzy, announce today the 71st Season of plays and musicals to be presented for teh 2017 Summer Season at the landmark theatre.

The Barn Theatre continues to operate under the non-profit entity, The Barn Theatre School for Advanced Theatre Training, and will further its mission of bringing professional, high-quality theatre to Southwest Michigan while expanding its educational youth outreach and training programs. The very popular youth outreach, Backstage Xperience*, will be offered this season, once again, as well as select ASL performances.

New This Season: Legroom. The first phase of seating updates has been completed and patrons can now enjoy more legroom in a section of the theatre. Also, dinners will be available on the Barn property on select nights. And, last but not least, patrons will be able to choose their seats through a new online ticketing system (coming soon) to The Barn’s Box Office. More news coming your way soon on these exciting developments. Get in the know, and join our email list to get announcements in your inbox.

JUNE 3, 2017 – 8:00 PM

Join us as we kick off the 71st Season with an unforgettable evening of music and memories. Barnies will take you behind the Barn in song and stories and preview the spectacular 71st Season. This special event is $40 per person. A reception will follow as well as a silent auction. Details and tickets available here.

JUNE 13 – 25
Disney’s the hunchback of Notre Dame – starring Robert Newman

Based on the victor Hugo novel and Disney animated feature, the hunchback of Notre dame showcases the academy award-nominated score, as well as new songs. The deformed bell-ringer, Quasimodo, held captive by his devious caretaker, Dom Claude Frollo (portrayed by Robert Newman), escapes to the boisterous Paris festival. He is captivated by the free spirit and beauty of Esmeralda, as is captain Phoebus and Frollo. Dom Frollo embarks on a mission to destroy the gypsies – and it’s up to Quasimodo to save them all. A sweeping score and powerful story make the hunchback of Notre dame an instant classic. You’ll be swept away by the magic of this truly unforgettable musical. (rated PG)

“’hunchback’ is the rare such show that actually earns its grandeur” – san Diego tribune

Music By Alan Menken
Lyrics By Stephen Schwartz
Book by Peter Parnell
*Backstage Xperience Production – June 15, 16, 21, 22, 23

June 27 – July 9
Buddy: the Buddy Holly Story

The incredible legacy of the young man with glasses, buddy – the buddy holly story tells the true story of buddy’s meteoric rise to fame. Featuring over 20 of buddy holly’s greatest hits including That’ll be the Day, Peggy Sue, every day, Oh Boy, Not Fade Away and Raining in My Heart, plus Ritchie Valens’ la Bamba and the big Bopper’s Chantilly Lace, your heart will be beating as loud as the drums! Slip away with a load of hits sure to have you grooving in the aisles!

“Buddy will ‘send you out of the theater on an unstoppable high’” – the Boston Globe

Book by Alan James

July 11 – 23
Queen’s We Will Rock You

Queen’s we will rock you is alive in a futuristic world, the iplanet, where rock music is banned and globalization is complete. Individuality is unthinkable… unless you are a rebel, a bohemian, who lives in the underbelly and resists the sterile world above. The bohemians need a hero to find them. Is Galileo that man? Featuring many of queen’s greatest hits including play the game, somebody to love, killer queen, bohemian rhapsody and the title track. This deliriously, majestically mad musical is magnifico-o-o-o-o!

“A lavish feast at the musical table” – Capital Radio 

Book by Ben Elton
Music by Queen

 July 25 – August 6
The Lion In Winter

Kim Zimmer and Robert Newman star in this modern-day classic of sibling rivalry, adultery, and dungeons. This comedic play tells the story of the plantagenet family locked in a free for all of competing ambitions to inherit a kingdom. The queen, Eleanor of Aquitaine, has been kept in prison since raising an army against her husband, king henry ii.  The play centers around the inner conflicts of the royal family. As queen Eleanor says, “every family has its ups and downs,” and this family is no exception.”

“A work of intelligence, astringent wit, and much theatrical skill” – New York Times

By James Goldman

**adult Backstage Xperience show. Dates tba.

August 8 – 20
Disney’s Newsies

Inspired by the real-life newsboy strike of 1899, newsies is the rousing tale of a ragged band of teenaged “newsies,” who dream of a better life far from the hardship of the streets. When up against corrupt publishing titans, they rally together to strike for what’s right. High-energy with non-stop thrills, the stage version introduces eight brand-new songs by the original team of Menken and Feldman while keeping many of the beloved songs from the film, including watch what happens, seize the day, king of New York and Santa Fe. You’ll be rooting from your seats in this David & goliath musical triumph!

“an exhilarating jolt of energy!” – NY daily news

Music by Alan Menken
Lyrics by Jack Feldman
Book by Harvey Fierstein
*backstage xperience production – august 10, 11, 16, 17, 18

August 22 – September 3

There are 525,600 reasons you’ll love Rent and two decades later, Barnie Jonathan Larson’s musical continues to speak loudly and defiantly across generations the world over. And now, this Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award®-winning masterpiece returns to the Barn stage! Based on Puccini’s opera, la Boheme, Rent tells the story of a group of impoverished young artists struggling to survive and create in New York’s Alphabet City, under the shadow of aids. Featuring the much-loved songs Seasons of Love, Take Me or Leave Me and La Vie Bohème, its inspiring message of joy and hope reminds us to measure our lives with the only thing that truly matters—love.  (rated PG 13 for adult themes, situations, language, drugs)

“rent is the best show in years, if not decades” – Variety 

Book, music & lyrics by Jonathan Larson


* The Backstage Xperience: The barn Theatre School for Advanced Theatre Training is proud to announce the Backstage Xperience 2017 to be held in conjunction with performances of: Disney’s the Hunchback of Notre Dame June 15, 16, 21, 22, 23 and Disney’s Newsies august 10, 11, 16, 17, 18!

Form your own group of four youth per every one chaperone, and don’t miss this amazingly fun, free educational opportunity! Email: for more information.  **adult Backstage Xperience dates tba.


  • The Barn Theatre is located on Highway M-96 between Augusta and Galesburg.
  • Performance schedule — Tuesday through Saturday at 8:00pm and Sunday at 5pm.
  • Single tickets are $37.  Group discounts available.
  • Barn Theatre box office opens May 22nd at 10:00 am.
  • For information call (269) 731-4121