2015-2016 | SEASON 24



AUG 12 13 14 | FRI & SAT 8PM  SUN 2PM 

Show not included in season pass
Half-price ticket ($10) with purchase of 2016-2017 season ticket


by Kenneth Lonergan

directed by JACK BARNARD
stage manager: DEBRA HARVEY

STAGED READING | Carson Merry Baillie returns to the stage she created, portraying the matriarch of the Green family, who has run an art gallery in a small Greenwich Village hotel for many years. Several actors from ABET’s early days join her onstage as members of her family and friends.

CARSON MERRY BAILLIE (Gladys Green). When pushing 90, an actress who was in the first production at PBTS (Sue) in the 50s, and has racked up almost as many roles as her years, finds it difficult to pick favorites. However, in ABET’s first production in 1992, I really enjoyed the role of Grandma in Tocoi Light, our first original play. Later, fun was the widow whose husband falls dead in the first act, Dearly Departed, in which we used local mayors as “Bud” different nights as they had to learn to fall without harm. Speaking of “dropping”, the hilarious role in Social Security, in which I dropped my housecoat only to enrapture the 90 year-old artist, was another joy to play. From farce to the classic Oscar Wilde comedy, The Importance of Being Earnest, whose arrogant Lady Bracknell (“a handbag?”) was every older thespian’s dream and a hoot to undertake. But for an actor, no part could surpass the mean Irish Mum in the local debut of the Broadway hit, The Beauty Queen of Leenane. Starring our own Karen Garrett, it may be ABET’s best and truest to our claim of “experimental”. But along those lines, I am most proud of producing and directing all of the Russian master, Anton Chekhov’s plays (with incidentally, Waverly’s stars, Karen, Leonard and Jack appearing in most.)  Beautiful sets designed by Mary Lou Boyer, costumes we cobbled together, all added to the whole. Never produced in Jax, The Sea Gull, Three Sisters, The Cherry Orchard and Uncle Vanya had outstanding casts who managed to pull out all the humor the playwright intended. Add Turgenev’s A Month in the Country, and Fortune’s Fool (starring Jack and David Boyer) and Lit major me was satisfied!    My last role onstage was Aussie Song (another original script) in which I played the Mother Superior. Tonight’s meaty role is probably my swan song (thank you Celia) so hope I pull it off.
KAREN GARRETT (Ellen Fine) is thrilled to be performing again at ABET with such a talented cast and director! Throughout ABET’s history she has appeared on the ABET stage numerous times. Karen’s last role at ABET was as one of the Sugar Bean Sisters. Some favorite ABET roles include Maureen in The Beauty Queen of Lenanne (also starring Carson), Esme in Amy’s View (also starring Brandon), Lizzie Bordon in After the Murders (directed by Jack), Valerie in The Weir (with Jack), Serefina in The Rose Tattoo, Maria Callas in Master Class and the “Russians”, (all directed by Carson), including The Sea Gull, The Cherry Orchard, and A Month in the Country (all also starred Jack and Leonard).  Happy Anniversary ABET (The “Jewel” of Atlantic Beach)!!
BRANDON FRANK (Daniel Reed) is returning to ABET after a long time away from the stage. His first role was playing Carson’s great-nephew in Approaching Zanzibar when he was twelve years old.  This was followed by roles in Nice People Dancing to Good Country Music, The Playboy of the Western World, and Amy’s View. He still takes credit for bringing his mom Celia Frank back into theatre, and to ABET, since it was his childhood request to ‘be in a play’ that set these events in motion. He also coined a subtitle for The Waverly Gallery: The Expendables – Theatre Edition.  Now a Ph.D. candidate in Clinical Psychology at Fordham University in New York, Brandon is grateful for the role ABET has played in his life over the years and grateful to be back on stage!
LEONARD ALTERMAN (Howard Fine)’s first play at ABET was A Month in the Country.  He later became Carson’s go-to man for Chekov plays such as The Three Sisters, The Seagull, Uncle Vanya and The Cherry Orchard.  Other ABET plays include Proposals, Kiss Me Kate, The Act, Once Upon a Mattress, Drood, Huey, The Fantasticks and The Gingerbread Lady. He also played solo saxophone in The Oldest Profession.  Recent plays elsewhere include Fiddler on the Roof, Oliver, South Pacific and Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat, all at the Northeast Florida Conservatory.
JORDAN SCHEMMEL (Don Bowman) is excited to be a part of this wonderful tribute to someone who fostered a love of theatre in him. He was last seen at OPCT as Brian in the 2014 production of Hotbed Hotel, and prior to that as Lendall in the 2013 production of Almost, Maine, and as Cal in the 2011 production of The Art of Dining. Other prior performances were as Cooper and the Reuters Reporter in Inherit The Wind at Theatre Jacksonville and as Professor Bhaer in Little Women here at Atlantic Beach Experimental Theatre. Jordan made his local theatre debut at ABET in Fortune’s Fool in 2005 as the servant, Pyotr as well as Stage Manager after getting a huge dose of inspiration from Carson in one of her Adult Drama Workshops. Other shows that he has worked either behind the curtain or as a cameo include To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday, Bye, Bye Birdie, Tumbleweeds, An Italian Straw Hat, Dearly Departed, and To Kill a Mockingbird. He would like to thank Jack, Celia, and the entire production team and cast of The Waverly Gallery for a great experience, and Carson for all the love and support and laughs over the years!

director: JACK BARNARD
stage manager: DEBRA HARVEY
lighting / sound tech: BETSY TOTTEN DARNELL
lighting and sound design: BRYAN FRANK
poster design: SHEPHERD
web design / social media marketing: CARYL BUTTERLEY


Red, White, and Screwed!

The SAT JULY 16, 8pm show is SOLD OUT.
An additional show on SUN JULY 17 at 7:30pm as been added. 

Mature Content | Ages 18+ only | Show not included in season pass

With all that has been going on in politics lately, it’s only natural that ASJ would devote a whole sketch comedy show to the insanity. Should we build a wall between the US and Mexico? Should the government give everyone everything for free?  Should emails be private? If you answered yes OR no to any of these questions then this is the show for you!