About Apple Alley Players

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat 2012
Apple Alley Players/McNeill’s Rangers began in 1980 as an outgrowth of an artist-in-residence program funded by the West Virginia Arts and Humanities Council and sponsored locally by Highland Arts Unlimited. We were known then as the Keyser Community Theater Group. Our first production, “The Man Who Came to Dinner” played to standing-room-only at the Church McKee Arts Center.

In an effort to establish a community identity, members researched the history of theater in the Keyser area. We began to realize we were continuing a fine, old tradition in our community. Our research found that traveling actors and musicians would perform in the alley behind the old Music Hall. That alley, known as Apple Alley, had given the travelers a chance to perform – exactly what Keyser Community Theater was striving for. With that in mind, The Keyser Community Theater Group became Apple Alley Players, Inc. in 1981.

McNeill's Rangers author Vana Nespor
and musical composer Dr. John Hawkins

In 1984, to fulfill a desire for a play of our own and a place of our own, the story of John Hanson McNeill was commissioned to Vana Nespor and Dr. John Hawkins. With such an expansive story, an organized, community-wide effort to construct the beautiful amphitheater at Larenim Park began. With cooperation from the Mineral County Parks and Recreation Commission, a matching grant from the Arts and Humanities Division of the West Virginia Department of Culture and History, and the support and dedication of countless volunteers and supporters, “McNeill’s Rangers” found a home.

McNeill's Rangers 1984
Now in our 32nd year, responding to our growing organization and wide-spread reputation, Apple Alley Players plans an extensive series of both indoor and outdoor productions.

Our support of the arts has remained enthusiastic and endless. Throughout the changes across the years, our purpose has always remained the same: To provide quality entertainment that reflects and enriches the expectations of our community.

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