“Sylvia” is a hilarious and touching play about love, marriage and a dog
by Antoine Marshall, Staff Writer
Schoolcraft’s theatre department held performances of the A.R Gurney comedy, Sylvia, which focuses on a young couple and their relationship with a dog, Jan. 24 through Feb. 1. Director Paul Beer did an amazing job casting this group of talented individuals. Lake Hardigan pulled of three roles and did an astounding job in each one. Hardigan played Tom (the man at the park with Greg), Phyllis (Kate’s friend) and Leslie (Kate and Greg’s therapist). Destinee Palazzolo, who portrayed Sylvia, was captivating in her ability to truly give the audience insight into what Sylvia is thinking, while still bringing comedic sassiness to the character. These performances, in addition to the equally spectacular performances of David Collins and Samantha Wilber, made Schoolcraft’s rendition of Sylvia truly special.
The main scenes take place in an apartment in Manhattan, while some other scenes take place in a dog park and a therapist’s office. Greg (David Collins) leaves work early because of an argument between him and his boss and finds Sylvia (Palazzolo), a poodle and lab mix. He decides to bring Sylvia home, hoping to keep her. Greg is at a crossroads in his life and is looking for some sort of fulfillment. He hates his job and is looking for something to give him purpose. He hopes that Sylvia can give him that fulfillment. Kate, Greg’s wife (Wilber), is against the idea of having a dog and she hates Sylvia. With children in college and Kate and Greg working all day, it doesn’t make sense for them to have a dog, in Kate’s opinion.
Greg shows so much affection toward Sylvia and he showers her with compliments whenever Kate is away. Due to this, Kate’s hatred for Sylvia grows ever stronger, and Sylvia knows it. She uses this to her advantage and gets closer to Greg. After taking Greg to a therapist many times, Kate takes an opportunity to teach abroad in England, bringing Greg along with her, as a way to pull him away from Sylvia.
Sylvia keeps the audience laughing and wondering what will happen next as there’s always another narrative curveball around the corner. Sylvia is a play full of jealousy, frustration, laughter and love all in one. It will keep you wanting more and wonder how is this going to end for the beloved dog Sylvia.