Drama/ 3 Characters, 1 Man, 1 Woman plus 1 additional Woman or Child / Full Length, Two Acts
Synopsis: A man carrying a little dog walks into an Animal Clinic run by a woman. The dog, adopted and given shelter by the man, has become too much of a burden for him. He demands that she “take care” of it. We quickly find out what that means.
Wanting to save the dog, the woman tries desperately to change his mind. He insists, but then relents. We hear the howling of the dogs in the gas chambers off-stage as the man leaves for the Registration Bureau down the hall.The man returns with his dog. In a hurry to return to his job on the railroad, he again insists that the woman “take care” of his dog. A “love scene” ensues, with the life of the dog hanging in the balance.The Dog moves relentlessly forward towards its horrifying conclusion.
“It’s been several days since I saw The Dog, and my thoughts keep returning to it . . . the play gradually seizes and touches something hidden in the soul.”
– Julia Matafonova, Ural Worker
“My feeling for The Dog has not changed since my first encounter with it several years ago . . . . What I admire it most for is its nobility of spirit, and for the heart that beats so vulnerably within it. There is no hero or villain here. We are them and they are us. We make choices in life, and for better or worse, we turn around one day to discover that our lives may be defined by these choices. There is no right or wrong, there is simply decision and consequence. We justify, we rationalize, and, sometimes, we even believe ourselves.”
– Howard Fishman, Director, American premiere
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About the Playwright: The name of Valentin Krasnogorov is well known to theater-goers of Russia and other countries. His plays The Real Man, Somebody Must Go Away, Procession of Gnomes, Love Medicine, Several Hours from the Life of a Man and a Woman, Delights of Adultery, Let’s Have Sex!, Small Tragedies, This Weak Tender Sex, Bride’s Room, The Cruel Lesson, and Murder Case are warmly met by critics and audience. He was President of the St. Petersburg Playwrights Association until 1992, and now lives in Israel.
Krasnogorov’s plays are contained in the permanent repertoire of many theatres and are sometimes played several hundreds times. Critics have noted that “Krasnogorov’s plays cross borders easily”; for this reason, many of them have been translated into foreign languages and staged in theatres, on radio, and on TV in different countries.
V. Krasnogorov is a member of the Writers Union of Russia; member of the Russian Union of the Theater Workers; and a member of the Israel Federation of Writers Unions. His biography is included in the dictionaries Marqui’s Who’s Who in the World, USA, International Who’s Who in the Intellectuals, England, Cambridge, et. al.
The Dog was first produced in English by The American Theater Company, New York City, in February, 1998.