Goat, or, Who Is Sylvia?

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Overview

Three-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Edward Albee's most provocative, daring, and controversial play since Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, The Goat won all the major awards for best new play of the year (Tony, New York Drama Critics Circle, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle). In the play, Martin—a hugely successful architect who has just turned fifty—leads an ostensibly ideal life with his loving wife and gay teenage son. But when he confides to his best friend that he is also in love with a goat (named Sylvia), ...
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Overview

Three-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Edward Albee's most provocative, daring, and controversial play since Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, The Goat won all the major awards for best new play of the year (Tony, New York Drama Critics Circle, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle). In the play, Martin—a hugely successful architect who has just turned fifty—leads an ostensibly ideal life with his loving wife and gay teenage son. But when he confides to his best friend that he is also in love with a goat (named Sylvia), he sets in motion events that will destroy his family and leave his life in tatters.

The playwright himself describes it this way: "Every civilization sets quite arbitrary limits to its tolerances. The play is about a family that is deeply rocked by an unimaginable event and how they solve that problem. It is my hope that people will think afresh about whether or not all the values they hold are valid."

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What People Are Saying

Ben Brantley
The Goat is about a profoundly unsettling subject, which for the record is not bestiality but the irrational, confounding, and even convention-thwarting nature of love. The form this force takes in The Goat is beyond a joke...Powerful...extraordinary...Four decades after Virginia Woolf sent shockwaves through the mainstream theatre, Mr. Albee still asks questions that no other major American dramatist dares to ask.
Clive Barnes
Unquestionably one of the wittiest and funniest plays Albee has ever written...enthralling.
Margo Jefferson
Leaves you with plenty to feel and think about...a tragedy with built-in laughs and elements of fantasy...a brave, questioning play.
Michael Feingold
Most likely to be talked about seriously—angrily, ferociously—for years to come.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781585673643
  • Publisher: Overlook Press, The
  • Publication date: 5/12/2003
  • Edition description: First
  • Pages: 112
  • Product dimensions: 5.74 (w) x 8.58 (h) x 0.67 (d)

Meet the Author

Edward Albee, the American dramatist, was born in 1928. He has written and directed some of the best plays in contemporary American theatre and three of his plays: A Delicate Balance, Seascape and Three Tall Women have received Pulitzer Prizes. His most famous play, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? won the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play. His other plays include The Zoo Story, The Death of Bessie Smith, The Sandbox, The American Dream, Tiny Alice, All Over, Listening, The Lady from Dubuque, The Man Who Had Three Arms, Finding the Sun, Fragments, Marriage Play and The Lorca Play.

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Customer Reviews

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 6, 2003

    This man loves Sylvia, what's wrong with that?

    From Edwards Albee, one of the most lauded contemporary playwrights who conceived such other fantastically unique works as Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Zoo Story and The Play About the Baby, comes quite possibly his most intriguing piece to date. Martin by most standards is a success. Tops in his field; approached to architect the city of the future. Full family life with a functioning loving wife and son 'Billy'. But on his birthday, something comes out. He's in love with Sylvia. And oh... Sylvia is a goat. When his friend and family find this out their process transcends their situation and lays a groundwork on which taboos can not be shrugged off as sinfully obscene practices not to be talked about. Some, uncomfortable with the seriousness of the topic may call it a black comedy, and to be sure, there are plenty of witty comments made. But it is the heart of this play, the way this man comes to love this goat, and the tragic goat song composed masterfully by Albee that will leave you ready to accept anything, and very pleased to have met Martin and Sylvia.

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