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Southern Appalachian Repertory Theatre is a professional theatre company in residence at the historic Owen Theatre on the campus of Mars Hill University. Since its founding in 1975 by visionary director and theatre educator Jim Thomas, SART has produced scores of plays, musicals, and original works, many portraying the rich culture and heritage of Southern Appalachia. After operating for many years as a program of MHU, SART became an independent nonprofit organization in 2003 and is governed by a volunteer board of directors.  In recognition of its artistic excellence and cultural importance to the community, SART has received major funding from the National Endowment for the Arts, North Carolina Arts Council, Madison County Arts Council. SART also receives major support  from Mars Hill University, along with donations and sponsorships from many generous individuals and business owners. 


Southern Appalachian Repertory Theatre is a company of passionate professional artists and leaders dedicated to serving and enriching our region by producing high-quality professional live theatre, by providing a nurturing environment for all involved, and by embracing and celebrating Appalachian culture. 


...informative, entertaining, and challenging live professional theatre. We seek to present an array of theatrical styles and genres in our programming. We have a responsibility to both preserve our theatrical legacy and develop new works to add to this legacy. By its nature live theatre evokes strong emotion and we recognize the need to present programming which may provoke reactions, both positive and negative. 


...a robust, vibrant arts community. SART is committed to leading our community and expanding awareness of the contribution the arts make to society.  SART strives to provide opportunities for diverse artistic expression for its artists, staff, audience, and community.


...the contribution of our artists and our staff. SART seeks to engage exceptional professionals to join us. SART is an “artistic home” which creates a sense of pride, involvement, and support among all who work here. This means that we must provide these individuals with the best possible working relationships within the constraints of our available resources.


...all who have a stake in our success. SART is committed to sustaining a connection among its subscribers, audience, artists, staff, donors, volunteers, our Board, Mars Hill University, the larger theatrical community, the region, students, teachers, and learners of all ages. The long-term sustainability of our theatre is at the forefront of our minds. SART is committed to financial strength as a means to achieve greater artistic freedom and long-term human, physical, and financial resources.

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