Upcoming Events


Ken Ludwig’s ” ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas”



 Directed by Ginger Correll, and produced in partnership with the Alleghany Community Theatre, this family-friendly comedy will be performed on Friday, December 9th at 7pm in Independence at the Historic 1908 Courthouse, on Saturday, December 10th at 7pm at the Rex Theatre in Galax, and on Sunday, December 11th at 2pm at Muddy Creek Café and Music Hall in Sparta.  If you think you know this classic Christmas tale, you’ve not heard the Mouse’s side of the story!   “‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.” But wait! A mouse is stirring – because Santa missed his house last year. Before you can say “Merry Christmas!”, we’re off on the wild adventures of a mouse, an elf, and a spunky little girl who just won’t take no for an answer. Don’t miss this joyful tribute to the holiday season!  Tickets are $10 for Adults and $5 for Children (18 yrs. and younger).  Tickets for the Independence and Galax performances can be reserved by calling the Arts Council at 276-238-1217; they will also be on-sale one hour before each performance.  Tickets for the Sparta performance will only be available one hour before that Sunday performance.

The cast of “Twas the Night Before Christmas” features actors of all ages from Carroll County, Grayson County, Galax, and Sparta!  Abby Hill from Grayson County plays Uncle Brierly & Sir Guy of Gisbourne, Levi Blevins of Independence takes on the dual roles of  Amos the Mouse/Amos of Kansas, Lydia Butt from Mouth of Wilson plays Amos’ best friend Emily, Nicole Butt plays Calliope (a very bossy elf), Sierra Nichols of Galax takes on the dastardly Mulch, Phoenix Lineberry of Galax makes her debut as Santa, Milo Hanks of Galax plays Wendell and Jeffee the Elf, Laura Hansen of Galax plays Britannia and Ginger Spice the Elf, and Laurel Davis of Sparta plays Candy Cane the Elf.  The production is ably assistant by Stephannie Dees (performance coach), Dorie Nichols (assistant to the director), Mason Blevins, David Roberson, and Emily Brooks (sound, lighting, technical crew), and Brandon Davis (sound tech).



Due to extreme weather which is forecast for September 10, the seventeenth Annual STORIES OF THE STITCH has been postponed until Saturday, September 24.  This year’s festivities will showcase a wide variety of disciplines within the world of traditional fiber arts. Live demonstrations, include quilting, weaving, spinning, felting along with celebrating the Matthews LHFM Heritage Day!  Admission to the day’s activities is free, though donations are gratefully accepted.  In addition to the celebrated judged Quilt Show, we’ll have local musicians, arts & craft vendors, food & drinks, and entertainment for the whole family.  This year we are so pleased to welcome Lorraine Covington, a nationally certified Quilt Judge and the author of “Essentials of Quilt Judging” to judge the many beautiful creations that will be on display at Stories of the Stitch.

Admission to the day’s activities is free, though donations are gratefully accepted.  In addition to the celebrated judged Quilt Show, we’ll have local musicians, arts & craft vendors, food & drinks, and entertainment for the whole family.

Quilters are welcome to enter their creations the day of the event in the following categories: Hand-Pieced & Hand-Quilted, Half & Half (Hand & Machine Worked), Machine-Pieced & Machine-Quilted, Appliquéd (Hand or Machine), Foundation Paper Piecing, Other (art, clothing, pillows, etc.), Classic Quilts (created before 1940), Youth (for quilters under 20), Best Story or ‘Quilt Tale’, People’s Choice.  Quilts may be offered for sale. Quilts should not be mass-produced, manufactured or store-bought. We do ask that winning quilts from previous Stories of the Stitch shows not be entered.

Each quilt may be accompanied by a story or “quilt tale” (optional). The story should be pinned to the quilt front, but not reveal your name and should be typed if possible. Stories may be about the history of the quilt, the pattern, the personal significance of the quilt, the quilt-maker, or a tall tale. A ribbon will be awarded for the best story.

As a special incentive to dig-out your best quilt – or even Granny’s Best Quilt that you’ve stashed away in the old cedar chest, each quilt entered in the show will also be entered for a custom-made quilters bag stuff with quilting notions and goodies.  Enter one quilt, get one chance.  Enter 12 quilts, get 12 chances to win this marvelous prize, donated by Ashley Jurney.

There is no limit on how many quilts a family may pre-enter, as long as there is a person to hang each quilt before 11:00am. Quilts must remain hanging until 3:00pm, weather permitting. Bring enough clothes pins to secure the quilt to the line and remember to pin your name to the back of each quilt.  Quilters are reminded that this is an outdoor event. The Arts Council & Matthews Farm are not responsible for damage by mother nature or her creatures. If rain is imminent the judging will conclude in the pavilion.

Directions to Stories of the Stitch/Matthews Farm from Galax: take US 58 West toward Independence. Turn left onto Meadow Creek Road (1/2 mile after the blinking light at W. Stuart Drive). Continue on Meadow Creek Road 1.5 miles & turn right onto White Pine Road. The Farm is .3 miles on your right.

The Arts & Cultural Council of the Twin Counties is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the arts throughout the Twin Counties.  The Arts Council is funded in part by area individuals and businesses, local municipalities, The Twin County Community Foundation, The Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, the Virginia Commission for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts.  For more information, please visit the Arts Council website, www.artsculturalcouncil.org or call the office at 276-238-1217.

2021 SOTS Entry Forms – Download your quilt entry forms here!


Wandflower Theatre, a young adult theatre project sponsored by The Arts Council of the Twin Counties, is back for Summer 2022 with “Peter/Wendy” by Jeremy Bloom.  This high-energy, fast-paced adaptation of J.M. Barrie’s “Peter and Wendy” and “The Little White Bird” is a classic, fantasy yarn about a boy who never grows up and a girl he lures away from her nursery to the magical world of Neverland.  This lyrical, atmospheric interpretation of “Peter Pan” is an exploration of innocence, friendship, family and loss, with a large dose of Pirate high-jinks thrown in for good measure.

Directed by Stephannie Dees, performances of “Peter/Wendy” are scheduled for July 15, 16, & 17, 2022 at 7:30pm on the Arts Council’s outdoor stage behind the Galax Public Library.  Admission is by donation and the audience is asked to bring their own lawn chairs. In a dramatic twist, the audience will be seated on the stage and the cast of “Peter/Wendy” will perform on the tiered seating and hillside surrounding the outdoor stage.  The cast is mix of old and new performers from all over the Twin Counties, featuring Abby Hill as Peter, Baily Delp as Wendy, Laura Horton as the Lost Boy/Mermaid, Angelina Avila-Gaytan as Tiger Lily, Toribia Maxwell as Tinkerbell, Sierra Nichols as Hook, Nicole Butt as Smee, and Peyton Hill as a Lost Boy.  Patrick Butler and Nicole Butt will also perform Mr. and Mrs. Darling as voice-overs.  The cast is ably assisted off-stage by David Roberson, Brant Burgiss, Pete Friedl, and Logan Ramey.



Is your child or grandchild a STAR just waiting to be discovered?  Well, Missoula Children’s Theatre’s “Johnny Appleseed” is the perfect way to hone their talent.  Starting Monday, July 25th, Missoula Children’s Theatre brings “Johnny Appleseed” to the Rex Theatre in Galax for a week-long theatre camp for area youth, ages 6 to 18.  All area students are welcome to join the Arts Council for auditions on Monday, July 25th at 10am at The Rex Theatre, and come see the show on Saturday, July 30th at 3pm at The Rex Theatre.  Student participant registration is $25/student and tickets to the Saturday performance are $5 per person (please contact the Arts Council if financial assistance is needed).  Tickets will be available for purchase at The Rex Theatre Box Office starting at 2pm on Saturday, July 30th.  For more information regarding participation or tickets, please contact the Arts Council at 276-238-1217 or visit our website at www.artsculturalcouncil.org.

This year’s production is all about the legendary Johnny Appleseed and his good pals, the Apple Seeds, to thank for an ample abundance of apple trees! Johnny and his little buddies travel across the land on foot, make friends with all kinds of people and animals, and sleep under the twinkling stars. Their delicious, heartwarming adventures yield orchards full of juicy, delectable fruit that take a crunchy bite out of hungry tummies across the west. Even a grumbly wolf is won over by the sweet taste of the apples and the kindness of friends. The tale of “Johnny Appleseed” is a tasty reminder that kindness is at the core of friendship.

Auditioning for “Johnny Appleseed” is as easy as pie!  Parents/Guardians simply come to The Rex Theatre between 9:30am and 10am on Monday, July 25th with their “stars in the making.”  Please make sure your student is closed-toe shoes!  There is a simple registration form to fill out and then the audition begins.  Based on the students’ ages and abilities, they are assigned roles by the MCT actor/educator team and rehearsals begin that day!  During the week, students can expect to be at The Rex Theatre from 10am to 2:30pm each day (some days may end at 12:00 noon).  Bringing bottled water and a substantial snack or lunch is recommended. All participating students should plan on being at the theatre each day for rehearsals and from 2pm to 5pm on Saturday, July 30th for the performance.

Joining the Arts Council this year from Missoula Children’s Theatre are Eliza Brisbin and Molly Armstrong.  They can’t wait to meet your student and help them have a great time on stage!

JOHNNY APPLESEED 2022 Permission Slip


BELL, BOOK, & CANDLE – Theatre Auditions

BELL, BOOK, & CANDLE – Theatre Auditions

CALLING ALL AREA ACTORS!  The Arts Council will be holding auditions for “Bell, Book, & Candle” by John Van Druten on Monday, August 8th and Tuesday, August 9th at 7:00pm.  The Auditions will be held at the Historic 1908 Courthouse in Independence.  Directed by Patrick Butler, the play will be performed on October 21, 22 & 23, 2022.  This 1950s play calls for 2-3 women and 2-3 men (one role is gender neutral for casting purposes).  All adults are welcome to audition and perusal scripts are available at the Arts Council offices.  

                                            PLAY SYNOPSIS 

Gillian Holroyd is one of the few modern people who can actually cast spells and perform feats of supernaturalism. She casts a spell over an unattached publisher, Shepherd Henderson, partly to keep him away from a rival and partly because she is attracted to him. He falls head over heels in love with her at once and wants to marry her. But witches, unfortunately, cannot fall in love, and this minute imperfection leads into a number of difficulties before they find out if they can live happily ever after.


2 women/3 men (potentially 3 women/2 men)

Gillian: (late 20’s-early 40’s) Intelligent, sophisticated woman who is also a practicing witch. She is the landlord of a Murray Hill brownstone where she, her Aunt Queenie, and Shep Henderson live. Gillian is restless and experiences a major personality transformation during the play. 

Shep: (early 30s-late 40s) A gentleman, a successful NY publisher, a hard-working man who is ready to get on with the next phase of a “successful” life…marriage. Despite being under a powerful love spell, Shep occasionally senses that something unorthodox is happening. He does not believe in witchcraft. 

Queenie: (mid 40s-mid 60s) Gillian’s aunt, also a witch, although not as powerful as Gillian. She is slightly eccentric and a bit mischievous. She loves her magic and has fun using it.

Nicky: (early 20s-mid 40s) Gillian’s brother. Charming, bright, with an easy manner and always ready for a party or a prank. Condescending toward mortals, but enjoys their company. Responds impishly when challenged, however. This role could easily be a female, ergo sister. 

Redlitch: (mid 40s-mid 60s) Author of a book about witchcraft containing just enough truth that it is clear he has some insights into this hidden world, yet he is also unaware that he’s not nearly as smart as he thinks. He is an outsider who thrives on being “in the know.” He is aware he will never be fully part of the witchy world and that lends him a slight air of desperation. He is always a little rumpled and often a little tipsy. 




UPDATE – August 19, 2022 – It is with great sadness that we must announce the cancellation of our 2022 Garden Party with a Twist which was scheduled for Sunday, August 21st at Dream Rock Silo and Suites in Independence, Virginia. Unfortunately, despite having performed my patented rain away dance last night, the forecast for Sunday is for 70% chance of rain & thunderstorms. We hope you understand and we look forward to seeing you at other Arts Council events throughout the year.

The spectacular “Garden Party With A Twist” returns to Dream Rock Silo & Suites in Independence on Sunday, August 21st (2pm – 4pm).  You are invited to an informal, country-chic garden party featuring the cool jazz of the Crooked Road Jazz Trio and delicious appetizers and sweet treats.  Guests will be able to tour the Dream Rock gardens throughout the afternoon and have the opportunity to take their chances on a fun raffle which includes jewelry, an art quilt, gift baskets and more. The afternoon is hosted by Rebecca Arrington, Linda Cooley, Boni Faith Haynes, Ashley Jurney, Brenda Lindsey, Katie Lipe, Carol Morris, and Ann Watson with the gracious support of Karen and Bill Simpson.  Karen and Bill are the owners Dream Rock Silo & Suites, an idyllic get-away located in the heart of Grayson County.  Tickets for the Arts Council’s “Garden Party with a Twist” are $20/person – gentlemen and ladies are both welcome!  To RSVP, please call The Arts Council at 276-238-1217.  Tickets may be purchased in advance via “The Box Office” on this website.  Cash, Checks and Credit Cards will also be accepted at the door.

**We ask that unvaccinated guests wear a face mask or shield.  Hand sanitizing stations will be available throughout the event space.



We are so excited to announce four concert dates at the Historic 1908 Courthouse in Independence!  As always, these concerts are on Sundays at 3pm with Admission by Donation.

First up will be Radford University’s Director of Piano Studies, Matthew Cataldi!  The Sunday, January 23rd concert will feature his original arrangements of Chopin’s Preludes. There will be a small post-concert reception.

The Sunday, January 30th concert from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts will be “Solo String Virtuosity from Bach to the Present” and will feature violinists and cellists performing works by Bach, Paganini, Hindemith, Corigliano, a cello quartet version of “Alleluia”, and other lyrical cello pieces.

The remaining concerts will also feature students from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts on

  • February 27th   Piano Trio Performance (Piano, Violin, and Cello)
  • April 10th     Classical Guitar Studio Performances

Please note that we will be practicing social distancing with our seating in the auditorium, and we ask that you wear a face mask to all concerts. 


Empty Bowls 2021 will be a socially-distanced, non-food event this year!  What does that mean?  Instead of gathering for a meal of soup, rolls, and dessert, you are invited to come to any or all of the Empty Bowls events to choose a hand-made pottery bowl and take home a packet of Soup Recipes!  Each Empty Bowl event will be held outdoors in the parking lot of the venue with tables of bowls set out for you to browse.  Make a donation (suggested donation is $10/person), choose a bowl, get your recipe book and head on home to make some soup!

We could have just skipped this year – serving food indoors for over 100 people at each event just isn’t safe right now – but our local food charities need our support more than ever!  So we put our thinking caps on and came up with a novel way to continue with this beloved and much needed program.  We hope to see you at EMPTY BOWLS 2021!

Saturday, March 20th ~ 11am to 1:30pm
VFW Post 7726, 115 Klondike Road, Independence
Benefiting Food Independence

Friday, March 26th ~ 11am to 1:30pm
1st United Methodist Church, 225 Fulcher St., Hillsville
Benefiting Carroll County Ministerial Assoc. Food Pantry

Saturday, March 27th ~ 11am to 1:30pm
Galax Public Library, 610 West Stuart Drive
Benefiting Galax Backpack Buddies


Marshaling the arts to feed more than just the soul

For information, please call The Arts Council at 276-238-1217




This production has been postponed until Spring 2022 due to the current health crisis.

By Jessie Jones, Nicholas Hope & Jamie Wooton
Directed by Stephannie Dees