POST: 'Sylvia' - Sylviaaaaa! Come here girl!!

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What's it about?

"Sylviaaaaa! Come here girl!!"
ait….NO SYLVIA!!! Bad, bad girl! DOWN!"

That’s right you heard it correctly. “Bad Sylvia.” That’s what happens when you give a (swearing and talking) four-legged furry friend a human name. The more human the name the more humanistic this furry critter becomes! Sylvia isn't your ordinary dog, she's a lost dog, found by Greg who is eager to bring her home and introduce her to his wife.  But what happens when you have one woman and a half (being a dog) under one roof? That's right - they clash!


What'd I experience?

But who exactly is Sylvia? Well for starters she is super energetic, fun-loving, and barks a lot. She is a Labrador-Poodle mix that is found wandering around Central Park by her new owner to be, Greg. Greg is a lonely and lost man, but it isn’t until he finds Sylvia that he regains a sense of who he really is. I mean who can really argue with man’s best friend.

Greg had only been living in the bustling city of New York for a short time, moving into an apartment with his wife, Kate. Now, they’ve been married for quite awhile but their children have flocked from the nest. Kate has big plans for her and Greg now that they have some more “alone” time. I don’t think Kate was expecting company at their new apartment, especially not the slobbering, drooling, and barking kind. But who knows, will Kate have a change of heart? Or are her meticulously thought out plans too permanent to alter?

Everyone needs a friend in this world. But who can compare to one with floor legs that can provide not only unconditional love but also loyalty. Sylvia is Greg's companion. Together they love to take long strolls in the evening and when Greg comes home Sylvia will run to his side in a heart beat. But what makes Sylvia stick out is her potty mouth. Things can get a little heated, especially when a cat comes into view. Sylvia can't talk to Greg like we as humans communicate but instead you can hear her thoughts out loud and know exactly how she feels about everything.

I have to say when I first heard of Sylvia the one thing that had immediately caught my attention was the name. All I could do was think to myself, “OMGGGGGGG THAT’S MY NAME….” Well almost… But seriously it’s not everyday that you get to see a play with your name in it, especially with an uncommon and ancient one like mine. Every time someone hears my name I get the, “Aw how nice my great-grandmother's name was Sylvia” speech. Like alright then I guess I’ll just go lie down in my coffin too then…

Here I was thinking, “Hmm if the title is Sylvia then so must be the main character.” Little did I know that this character was going to be furry and wagging her tail half the time. I really wasn’t expecting Sylvia to be a dog but it was a pleasant surprise.

Usually people will name their dogs some four letter name like Ruby or Spot, but then again I have a dog of my own and I named him Charlie (after the movie Charlie and the Chocolate Factory). Sylvia, that’s a very proper name to give to a dog but I guess it is one-of-a-kind much like her. Sylvia was wacky in her own way, as much as she was loving, she did give Greg a hard time.

It was so funny to see a human play a dog and actually speak her mind to make it known what Sylvia is thinking all the time. I know that many times I sit and wonder if my dog Charlie could talk, then what would he say? And then sometimes I’m thankful he can’t - for all the times his tail has been stepped on accidentally. Would he swear just as much as Sylvia???

For me, one of the most memorable scenes from the show had to be when Sylvia would go on her walks with Greg. Normally, you clip the dogs leash to their collar and go about your merry way. However, not in Sylvia's case. You have Sylvia walking on two legs where you have to pretend that she's on all fours and holding onto the other end of the leash. I mean she did have a collar around her neck but interestingly enough not once was she actually clipped to it.

The appearance of Sylvia: you have the furry brown sweater with matching brown leggings to resemble her fur and then....knee-pads! I can only imagine how hard it must be to move around like a dog on all fours. Rather than bark like "woof woof" Sylvia would greet people by shouting "Heyyy! Heyyy!". And as funny as it sounded, I never actually thought about how when a dog barks essentially they are greeting you.

 My little Charlie Boy.

My little Charlie Boy.

To me Sylvia wasn’t just a show about a dog and their owner. It was more about how we see our pets as our best friends. We become so attached to these little critters that we end up loving them as if they were people. That’s why in the end when Kate tells us that after many long years Sylvia passed away, you find Kate crying because even she (who at first was so anti-Sylvia) learned to love and accept her into the family. I was both touched and tearing up. 


 

Want to see it?

$32 Online Lottery
$35 Tix4Students

Sylvia
Cort Theatre
thru Jan. 3