Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

'Social Security' Takes on Golden Years

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

'Social Security' Takes on Golden Years

Article excerpt

Byline: Tamara McClaran, Shorelines correspondent

Social Security, the latest production of the Atlantic Beach Experimental Theatre, is an incredibly funny and engaging show. The strong cast presented a spirited performance opening night and received a standing ovation from almost everyone in the nearly full house.

Screenwriter Andrew Bergman, who also wrote Blazing Saddles, The In-laws, So Fine and Fletch, created a modern-day comedy with Social Security. The show's title reflects the issues and challenges of life's golden years. It demonstrates the outrageous conflicts adult children have with each other as well as their parents. As Social Security shows, both sisters end up sharing the burden of caring for their mother, even though mom is calling all the shots.

Director Rebecca Williams did a great job of establishing and developing the relationships that take place in Social Security. The story begins as uptight suburbanites Trudy and Martin Heyman (played by real life married couple Sue and John Pope) arrive at the home of Trudy's sister Barbara (Korina Barber) and her husband, David Kahn (Jon Fine). Trudy has told her sister Barbara that they want to come over to discuss something with them. Barbara is concerned yet can't figure they want to talk about.

The madness begins once they walk in the door, in part, because the two couples are opposites of each other. David and Barbara live a sophisticated lifestyle while Trudy and Martin are anxious and uptight about everything in their suburban world. The Heymans are afraid and talk in circles, yet it becomes apparent they can't let go of their college-aged daughter. They tell the Kahns they are going to rescue her at college and they are leaving mom with them in New York while they go off. By the way, mom is downstairs in the car ready to come up.

Immediately, the Kahns find their lives turned upside-down. Their mother, Sophie Greengrass (Carson Merrie Baillie, ABET's artistic director) is cantankerous and demanding. Her unwillingness to cooperate makes for some very funny moments, especially when she refuses to dress up for company coming for dinner. …

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