The Barn Players Community Theatre
The Barn Players Theater was founded in 1955 by Earl Altaire, who personally guided the renovation of a large barn (near 81st and Mission Road in Prairie Village, KS), turning it into a theater seating 225 people. From 1955 to 1971, this was the home of the Barn Players.
Earl Altaire died in 1959, but his dream of a strong community theater was kept alive by a group of his original Barn Players. They banded together to form a non-profit corporation, The Barn Players, Inc., in Johnson County, Kansas.
Due to impending commercial development in Prairie Village, the 1971 season found the Barn Players at the old Manor Barn near 91st and Metcalf, in Overland Park, KS.
Negotiations with officials of Johnson County Community College began in earnest in late summer 1971, as the Barn Players sought a permanent home and a closer identification with their immediate community.
Beginning in 1972, the college provided a home for the Barn Players. In return, the Barn Players gave the college and the community a theater which involved area citizens in every way and at every level of the theatrical experience.
In 1990, after 18 years of performances at JCCC, the Barn Players found themselves without a home. Undaunted, the Barn Players continued with performances for the main summer season shifted to the Shawnee Mission High Schools and additional performances being staged in the Old Shawnee Town Hall, the Shawnee Civic Center and the Roeland Park Community Center.
In 2004 thanks to the help of the Northeast Johnson County Chamber of Commerce
the Barn Players found a new home at Martway and Lamar in Mission, KS.
In 2006, the Credit Union of Johnson County (CUJC) (Now Mainstreet Credit Union) purchased the land and building of our current location. In 2008, The Barn Players and CUJC signed a long term agreement, now ending in December, 2017.
Many people throughout the Barn Players history have gone on to professional work on stage, screen and television: Kansas City actors Dan Barnett, Cathy Barnett, Jim Birdsall, Dodie Brown, Phil Fiorini, Patrick Lewallen, Melinda McCrary and John Rensenhouse. As well, Broadway, TV, and film actors Lynn Cohen, Arliss Howard, and Henry Stram once graced our boards. Most notable of our alumni is Academy Award winning actor Chris Cooper.