At a funeral in an Italian sector of Brooklyn, mourners come to pay tribute to a police officer of questionable character, killed while allegedly defending the life of the Pope. Though each of the attendees has a colorful relationship with the victim, it is the policeman's pregnant mistress who causes a sensation. Will she and her unborn baby be permitted to stay? Was the deceased a hero or just a poor slob in the wrong place at the wrong time? Insults and furies fly as the women, Italian to the core, debate the legacy of this fallen man.
"The characters...are Brooklyn Italians...Their ethnicity runs a distant second to their universality; their appeal is their humanity. Sometimes, they are very funny, too. " - The New York Times
"Human behavior in the face of tragedy is the essence of Amidst the Gladiolas, an engrossing drama with occasional lightweight comedy relief by Vito Gentile...The playwright has endowed his characters with such believable and undeniable recognizable human qualities at such an occasion, that they become automatically interesting, and instantly snare audience involvement." - Variety
"The drama has some of the harrowing quality of Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? – another drama that moves in real time – and while the baiting and abuse never get quite so horrid in Amidst the Gladiolas, it can be unpleasant to witness, as if one were truly overhearing a bitter family quarrel." - The Bergen Record