Cherry Orchard Theatre


Outdoor theatre is a tradition in our part of the world. Over the years North Carolina has boasted more outdoor theatre productions than any state in the country, ranging from famous ones like “The Lost Colony” and “Unto These Hills” to lesser known productions that are often of good quality.

Though we are in Virginia, we are only eight miles distant from this “mother” state of outdoor theatre. Inspired by the tradition in North Carolina — and by the 55-mile view of mountains and valleys from our cherry orchard outdoor ampitheatre site — since 1999 we have been offering a wide variety of theater experiences at The Cherry Orchard Theatre. Here we have performed dozens of plays, had numerous concerts and storytelling gatherings, and played host to some of the leading theatrical and musical talent in our region. Over the years many thousands of people have come, bearing lawn chairs and perhaps a picnic supper and a bottle of wine — no restrictions there! — to watch performances and to enjoy the coolness of the Blue Ridge Mountain evening and the spectacular view behind the stage.

Showtime is at 7 p.m. on Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings. Rain or shine, the show must go on — if it’s raining we move to our packhouse, a friendly confine for theatre that smells like the peaches we are selling there during theater season! Tickets are $10 and purchased at the door — reservations are accepted but not required, there is plenty of elbow room. Bring lawn chairs, food, and something to drink — then sit back on the cool grass, and enjoy the show! We will be doing live theater, music, or storytelling on Labor Day weekend, September 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th as well.

Summer 2016 Schedule

Friday and Saturday: August 5th and 6th

Storytellers from our region, including Terri Ingalls, Dick Olchav, Su Olchav, and others will be telling stories at the theater. As well, Carroll County songwriter and musician John Carpenter brings his songs to the stage on Friday night. Angell Caudill reads her poems. Join us!

Wednesday: August 10th, 7pm

A very special event – Peppercorn Theatre of Winston-Salem, renowned for children’s theatre and its work with puppets, presents a live music concert of bluegrass music (and more) with the band The Blue-Eyed Bettys. Come pick your own apples before the show. Tickets at the door, just $10.

Friday, Saturday, and Sunday: August 12th, 13th, and 14th

Each evening we’ll be doing staged readings of celebrated one-act plays by renowned playwrights, including Beth Henley, James Purdy, Gert Hoffman, Lanford Wilson, and more. We’ll also be reading some poetry. Join us for a meaningful, adventurous experience in theater.

Friday, Saturday, and Sunday: August 19th, 20th, and 21st

Cherry Orchard Theatre is proud to debut an exciting new play by Winston-Salem’s Beverly Johnston, directed by Angell Caudill.

In Other Words Poster

IN OTHER WORDS is an eloquent and moving play rooted in the harsh environment and endemic culture of West Virginia’s coal mining regions. As Johnston examines relationships in one mountain family, the bittersweet realities of life fill the stage like a mountain fog. Humor and history anchor a script woven of beautiful poetry and prose in which love and hate create a tapestry of family, though excruciating, hauntingly familiar. Playwright Beverly Johnston is “of West Virginia” and her work often explores the region’s culture and tragic history.

Friday, Saturday, and Sunday: August 26th, 27th, and 28th

Don’t miss this one! The Woods, by David Mamet, turns the classic theater premise of a romantic weekend getaway on its ear in what turns out to be the psychologically chilling woods of the Michigan Lake country. An intense, strangely romantic theater experience. We’re doing a full-scale production of this renowned two-character love story. Because of strong language and sexual situations, parental discretion is advised, and anyone who objects to profanity in theater might be advised to skip this one.

Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday: September 2nd, 3rd, 4rd, and 5th

This labor day weekend of theater includes a performance on Labor Day itself, Monday, September 5th at 7pm. Our play, The Face, is a brand-new play by Frank Levering, who co-wrote the hit horror film, “Parasite,” in 1982, starring Demi Moore. With The Face, Frank gets anyone who comes to see the play into a Halloween season frame of mind. Set in the Blue Ridge Mountains, but based on an old Irish tale of the supernatural, The Face tells the story of Jerry Haynes, a farmer who falls in love with the beautiful face of what appears to be a young woman, her eyes closed, that floats for years and years on moonlit nights in a mountain pond. This eerie, bone-chilling love story is like nothing you have ever seen in theater. Bring the kids. Bring your mother-in-law. And have a great, spooky time!

Admission is only ten dollars. Bring a lawn chair and anything you would like to eat or drink.

For more information starting in July-, and any questions you may have, please call 276-755-3593. On Saturdays and Sundays, you can call the packhouse number — 276-755-3593 — and speak with Frank Levering.You can also often speak with Frank at 276-755-4722 (cell phone reception permitting), or email him at

We’ll see you on the mountain!

— Frank Levering

Share This