The Barter Theatre,
located in the Blue Ridge highlands of Abingdon, Virginia, was founded by Robert
Porterfield in 1933 and designated the State Theater of Virginia in 1946. It is
the longest-running professional Equity theater in the nation. (The Actors'
Equity Association is a live-theater labor union.) Opening its doors in the
midst of the Great
Depression, Barter earned its name by allowing patrons to pay the
admission price with produce, dairy products, or livestock. The shows were
sometimes forced . . .
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