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Beckley To Host May 9 performance of ‘Coal Country’

“Coal Country,” a play about the 29 men who lost their lives in the Upper Big Branch mine disaster in 2010,  is on its way to Beckley. Fresh from its off-Broadway run at New York’s Cherry Lane Theatre, The New York Times “Critic’s Pick” will premiere at the Woodrow Wilson High School auditorium for a special one-night performance on Monday, May 9. 

The special Beckley performance of Coal Country has been made possible by the efforts of Theatre West Virginia, and tickets for the show are free. 

The first 400 tickets for Coal Country… will be made available free of charge to any family members who lost loved ones at the Upper Big Branch disaster

As stated on Theatre West Virginia’s website: “The first 400 tickets for Coal Country at Woodrow Wilson High School Auditorium in Beckley, WV will be made available free of charge to any family members who lost loved ones at the Upper Big Branch disaster, as well as survivors and former employees by emailing beginning Monday, April 25 at 10 a.m.

All remaining tickets will be distributed free of charge by local show sponsors. Free tickets will also be available by visiting Theatre West Virginia’s website on a first come – first serve basis.”

For more information, including a full cast list, visit

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Matthew Young has been a resident of Lewisburg, WV since December 2019. Prior to arriving in West Virginia, Matthew resided in the Philadelphia area, where his reporting, commentary, and editorials have been featured in numerous local and regional publications. Previously, he has served as a scriptwriter and consultant for television, radio, and various other short-form digital-media platforms, both within the United States and internationally. Since moving to the Mountain State, Matthew spent eighteen months as senior writer/managing editor for the West Virginia Daily News and is currently an active journalist with the West Virginia Press Association.