‘Support Group for Men” at Horizon Theatre
“Support Group for Men” has received glowing accolades in Chicago and Washington, so I’m looking forward to seeing this play at Horizon Theatre.
Written by Ellen Fairey, a writer/producer on “Nurse Jackie” and “Masters of Sex,” the play 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 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.
The cast 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).
Recommended for teens and adults, Support Group for Men contains some adult language and themes. Performances run 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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