SUPPORT GROUP FOR MEN is Now Playing at Horizon Theatre

Performances began April 21 and the play runs until May 28. 

By: May. 09, 2023
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Everyone is invited to "Guys' Night" at Horizon Theatre when the "laugh-out-loud funny" play Support Group for Men takes the stage at the Inman Park theatre. Writer Ellen Fairey (Showtime's Masters of Sex, Nurse Jackie) follows a diverse group of four everyman-type guys who gather on Thursdays to vent over glasses of rosé - with a "No Ladies" policy strictly enforced. Passing a baseball bat as a "talking stick," this motley crew supports each other through stalled careers, dashed romances and a fast-changing world. When an unexpected visitor crashes the party, their notions of what it means to be a man in today's America are suddenly upended. Set in 2017 as conversations on #MeToo and gender issues captured public attention, this hopeful comedy captures the voices of a group of friends as they graciously reconcile their worldviews and ideas of masculinity with an ever-evolving social landscape. Performances begin April 21, Press Opening is Friday, April 28 and the play runs through May 28.

"Support Group for Men is a very funny ensemble comedy that also covers some huge topics - from the Me Too movement to gender identity to generational differences, just to name a few," said Horizon Theatre Co-Artistic/Producing Director Lisa Adler. "The characters are grappling with these issues in a sympathetic, unique, and absolutely hilarious way. These are regular Chicago guys going out on a limb to try a new way to connect and build friendships across generations and backgrounds. We want audiences to leave this show feeling lighter, more hopeful and with a new perspective on the challenges we all face in a time of rapidly changing expectations. And perhaps consider starting or recharging the support groups in their lives."

Playwright Ellen Fairey's work has been hailed "a must-see for anyone who follows important new plays." (Chicago Tribune) "This play invites conversation. People from all generations seem to respond to it. It's not just for millennials, and it's not just for middle-aged people. There seems to be something for everyone, and I didn't know that until I was sharing it with audiences," reflects Ms. Fairey. "I like to write about everyday people, the salt-of-the-earth types. It feels subversive to write this play about men, and I'm not taking them down or putting them in their place. I'm actually looking at them whole-heartedly, I hope, and realistically."

"I hope people will leave feeling they've seen themselves onstage, that they've understood some things about others that they hadn't understood before. And that in turn makes them feel less alone."

The talented cast of Atlanta professional actors includes many faces new to Horizon. Brian (Louis Kyper, long-time member of the Blue Man Group) is the support group founder who gathers the guys at his Chicago apartment each week to pass the talking stick. He's a career Apple Store worker in an oddly "perfect" relationship with a much younger woman. Brian's high school friend, black executive Delano (Marcus Turner-Hopkins*, Hands Up and A Christmas Carol, Alliance Theatre) is happily married and living in the suburbs but is looking for something more. New to the group is Brian's younger, "hip," Latinx co-worker Kevin (Sariel Toribio, Romeo at Atlanta Shakespeare Tavern) who is their window into his more youthful world of YouTubing, music and sexual fluidity. Roger (Atlanta newcomer Evan Bergman, MFA, U of VA), Brian's unmarried blue-collar friend from his softball league has the farthest to go in understanding the new expectations of 21st century men. He never pictured himself drinking pink wine and talking about his feelings, but now he's trying to muddle through a mid-life crisis. Then Alex, a young stranger (Roberto Mendez, City Springs' Spamalot), suddenly turns the support group on its head. The Chicago cops who show up to investigate a crime and up the stakes are the tart and tough Officer Caruso (Kelly Criss Morningside and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Georgia Ensemble, and Horizon veteran Suehyla E. Young sharing the role) and her macho partner Officer Nowak (Brad Brinkley, Horizon's How to Use a Knife).

Bringing Support Group for Men to life is a group of creative talents lead by Director Jeff Adler (Horizon's Co-Artistic Director, Director Every Brilliant Thing) and Assistant Director Matt Mercurio. Horizon's resident set designers Isabel and Moriah Curley-Clay (most recently Horizon's Kim's Convenience) and resident lighting designer Mary Parker are creating a realistic man cave of a Chicago northside apartment above a busy bar/club below. Other members of the creative team include Costume Designer Dr. Nyrobi L. Moss (Horizon's Designing Women), Sound Designer Dan Bauman (most of Dad's Garage's scripted shows), and props master newcomer Ava Holtzman.

Recommended for teens and adults, Support Group for Men contains some adult language and themes. Performances begin April 21, press opening is April 28 and the play runs until May 28. Tickets start at $30 on weekdays and $35 on weekends (plus taxes and fees). Prices are subject to change and prices rise as performances fill up, so patrons are encouraged to order early for the best prices and availability. Students under 25 can purchase $20 tickets with valid student ID by calling the box office. Single ticket seating is general admission, with a reserved seating section for season subscribers. For ticket sales and more information on single tickets and subscriptions, visit horizontheatre.com or call the Box Office at 404.584.7450.

Regular show times are as follows:

  • Wednesday, Thursday, Friday: 8 p.m.
  • Saturday: 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. (no matinee on April 29)
  • Sunday: 5 p.m.



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