Abingdon, Va. - Barter Theatre doesn't have any performances during the month of January traditionally; that tradition is about to be broken, not with theatre but with music.
This Saturday night the town of Abingdon, along with Barter Theatre and Bone Fire Brands, launch their January Jams series. It's a concert every Saturday night during the month.
We got a sneak peak of what you can expect. We witnessed and listened to history of sorts. Members of regional band Wise Old River did a few tunes on the stage of the world-famous Barter Theatre.
Barter is known for it's world-class theatrical performances and musicals, but it is now becoming a music venue during the month for the January Jams series.
"We're really excited about it. January traditionally is pretty slow in Abingdon. It's wintertime there's not a lot happening. Barter Theatre is not performing so we jumped at the chance to work with the town of Abingdon and have live music in here," Barter marketing director Amanda Leslie said.
The series will feature names like Acoustic Syndicate, who opens the series, and Guy Clark, Steep Canyon Rangers and Leon Russell, who Wise Old River will open for. "It's amazing. I didn't think that I would be playing here and it's great that there having music here. It's a really good thing," Jamen Denton with Wise Old River said.
"We're moving in the right direction. There's really a great hunger out there in the community for really great music whether its local music or bands coming in from the region. There's really a big market for it," says Leslie.
And for the Barter, an otherwise down time becomes an active time, a very exciting time. What would the theatre's founder think? "I wonder what Bob Porterfield would have thought of this and I think he'd be delighted. I think his ghost is up there watching and he's going to be jamming along with the audience," Leslie said.
If you want to jam along this January, you better get those tickets early. Just check with the Barter box office for availability.