Hunter Foster and Jennifer Cody Lead Doggy Comedy SYLVIA, Opening Tonight at Geva Theatre Center
Geva Theatre Center presents Sylvia, an adult urban comedy with a huge heart. Written by A. R. Gurney, Sylvia is directed by Mark Cuddy and will be performed in the Wilson Stage from tonight, January 10, to February 5.
Empty nesters Greg and Kate have relocated back to Manhattan after two decades of raising their family in the suburbs. As Kate observes: "The dog phase of my life is definitely over." When Greg finds Sylvia, a street-smart Labra-doodle in Central Park and brings her home, she becomes a bone of contention between Greg and Kate, testing their marriage to howlingly hilarious and touching effect.
Buffalo-born A.R. Gurney is the playwright of Scenes From American Life, Children, The Dining Room, The Middle Ages, Richard Cory, The Golden Age, What I Did Last Summer, The Wayside Motor Inn, Sweet Sue, The Perfect Party, Another Antigone, The Cocktail Hour, Love Letters, The Snow Ball (adapted from his novel), The Old Boy, The Fourth Wall, Later Life, A Cheever Evening, Sylvia, Overtime, Let's Do It (A Cole Porter Musical), Labor Day, Far East, Darlene And The Guest Lecturer, Ancestral Voices. He wrote libretto for Strawberry Fields, with music by Michael Torke, part of the Central Park Opera trilogy presented by the New York City Opera in the fall of 1999. Novels include The Gospel According to Joe, Entertaining Strangers, and The Snow Ball. Awards include Drama Desk, N.E.A., Rockefeller Foundation, New England Theatre Conference, Lucille Lortel, American Association of Community Theatres, American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. Mr. Gurney holds honorary degrees from Williams College and Buffalo State University. Mr. Gurney was on the faculty of M.I.T. until 1996.
Sylvia is a play with a wonderful pedigree. It premiered Off-Broadway at the Manhattan Theatre Club in 1995 where it ran for 167 performances. The cast included Sarah Jessica Parker as the spunky labradoodle, Sylvia. The production received a number of Drama Desk nominations including one for Best New Play. It has been produced at theatres around the world and was produced on Broadway in 2015.
Geva's production of Sylvia features an all-star cast - three returning to the Wilson Stage and one making her Geva Theatre Center debut. Rochester native Jennifer Cody (Broadway's A Christmas Story, Shrek, The Pajama Game, Taboo, Urinetown the Musical, Seussical the Musical, Grease, Beauty and the Beast and Cats and Geva productions of The Odd Couple, Women in Jeopardy! and Spamalot!) is Sylvia, the spunky Labradoodle. Tony Award-nominee Hunter Foster (Broadway's The Bridges of Madison County, Hands on a Hardbody, Million Dollar Quartet, The Producers, Little Shop of Horrors, Urinetown the Musical, LES MISERABLES, Footloose, King David and Grease and Geva's production of Spamalot!) plays the multiple roles of Tom, Phyllis and Leslie and John Scherer (Broadway's LoveMusik and Sunset Boulevard and Geva's production of Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike) is Greg. Making her Geva Theatre Center debut as Kate is three-time Tony nominee Dee Hoty (Broadway's Footloose, The Best Little Whorehouse Goes Public, The Will Rogers Follies, Bright Star, Gigi, Mamma Mia!, Bye Bye Birdie, City of Angels, Me and My Girl, Big River).
Sylvia is directed by Artistic Director Mark Cuddy. The design team includes Jo Winiarski (scenic designer), Susan Branch Towne (costume designer), Ann G. Wrightson (lighting designer) and Scott Killian (Sound Designer).
The 2016-2017 Wilson Stage Series is sponsored by ESL Federal Credit Union. The Honorary Wilson Stage Series Sponsor is Dr. Dawn Lipson. Sylvia is produced with support from Lead Co-Producer St. John Fisher College; Co-Producer Harter Secrest & Emery LLP; Associate Producer Entre Computer Services and Media Sponsors News10 NBC and 98WPXY.
Sylvia begins performances January 10 and runs in the Wilson Stage through February 5. Ticket prices start at $25. For reservations, call (585) 232 GEVA (4382) or visit www.gevatheatre.org. Geva Theatre Center is located at 75 Woodbury Blvd, Rochester, NY 14607.
Founded in 1972, Geva Theatre Center is a not-for-profit, professional theatre company dedicated to creating and producing professional theatre productions, programs and services of a national standard. As Rochester's leading professional theatre, Geva Theatre Center is the most attended regional theatre in New York State, and one of the 25 most subscribed in the country, serving up to 160,000 patrons annually, including more than 16,000 students.
The 522-seat Elaine P. Wilson Stage is home to a wide variety of performances, from musicals to American and world classics. The 180-seat Ron & Donna Fielding Stage is home to Geva's own series of contemporary drama, comedy and musical theatre; Geva Comedy Improv; Geva's New Play Reading Series and the Hornets' Nest - an innovative play-reading series facilitating community-wide discussion on controversial topics. In addition, the Fielding Stage hosts visiting companies of both local and international renown.
Geva Theatre Center offers a wide variety of educational, outreach and literary programs, nurturing audiences and artists alike. Since 1995, the organization has been under the artistic direction of Mark Cuddy.
*Open captioning is provided with support from Hearing Loss Association of America - Rochester Chapter.
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