Support Group for Men
by Ellen Fairey
Originally produced at Goodman Theatre, Chicago, IL
June 23 to July 29, 2018
About the Premiere Production:
Synopsis: Support Group for Men is a hilarious exploration of what happens when society's new normal doesn't seem so normal anymore. Thursday night in Wrigleyville is "Guys' Night" for a group of longtime pals. Instead of letting off steam over baseball, they've formed a support group -- with its "No Ladies" policy strictly enforced--where they can vent about dashed romances, stalled careers and other middle-aged maladies. But when an unexpected visitor crashes their party, the guys' traditional notions of masculinity are upended. This topical, Chicago-flavored comedy gleefully dissects the ever-changing role of gender in today's culture--and proves that understanding is sometimes found in the least likely of places.
Artistic Statement: “We are thrilled to produce the world premiere of Ellen Fairey’s Support Group for Men—the hit of our 2016 New Stages Festival, with hundreds of patrons praising it for its warm humor and exploration of our society’s changing notions of gender and the gender binary,” said Robert Falls. “Few plays in the American theater tackle these themes while remaining as accessible as Ellen’s new play. We look forward to the conversations it is certain to spark.”
Grant Statement: This grant will cover one full week of rehearsal for the play’s entire creative team. Due to the complex (and, at times, fraught) national conversation about gender, this additional time will allow Fairey to ensure that her choices are fine-tuned to the cultural moment and that all the performers have sufficient time to develop their characters’ viewpoints with nuance and respect.
Director: Kimberly Senior
Set Designer: Jack Magaw
Lighting Designer: Jen Schriever
Costume Designer: Noel Hutzinger
Sound Designer:Richard Woodbury
Production Stage Manager: Alden Vazquez
Cast: Elena Flores, Anthony Irons, Ryan Kitley, Keith Kupferer, Jeff Kursyz, Steve Wojtas
Additional funders: Winston & Strawn LLP, Time Warner Foundation, The Pritzker-Pucker Foundation, The Glasser and Rosenthal Family, Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, The Joyce Foundation