Feb. 20, 2014
Hollywood glamour and celebrity scandals are coming to Catholic University as a new play, "Fifi and Hunter Forever," premieres at Hartke Theatre Feb. 27 through March 2.The M.F.A. screen-writing thesis of Robert Montenegro, "Fifi and Hunter Forever" is a satiric look at modern Hollywood and celebrity worship. The play will be directed by Jenny McConnell Frederick, the owner of the Rorschach Theatre in Washington, D.C.The play centers on the made-for-tabloids romance of Fifi, a washed-up child star, and Hunter, an ambitious unknown actor, as orchestrated by conniving agent-to-the-stars Clair Cupid. Montenegro was inspired to write the play while watching news coverage of a celebrity divorce. "At the time, the big news was that Ryan Reynolds and Scarlett Johansson had broken up," he said. "I just got to thinking, 'What if their relationship was just a fake marriage or a concoction of some power broker in Hollywood?' That was sort of a starting-off point that I thought was really interesting."Over the course of the semester, Montenegro said he has enjoyed working with McConnell Frederick during rehearsals and watching his words come to life. "Being inside that process and watching the actors create those characters is really fun," he said. "What I like most is handing someone the blueprint and watching them build the building and seeing the little things they tinker with to improve the building. Seeing the little things that pop up has been really wonderful."The play deals with themes of self-identity and Montenegro hopes it will take audience members on a fun and entertaining ride. "I wrote the play because I wanted it to be funny and I wanted it to be something that people can come see and laugh at," Montenegro said. Performances will take place at Hartke Theatre, 3801 Harewood Road, N.E., Washington, D.C., Thursday and Friday, Feb. 27 and 28, at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, March 1, at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.; and Sunday, March 2, at 2 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults; $10 for senior citizens, students, CUA alumni, faculty and staff; and $5 for CUA students. For more information or to buy tickets, call 202-319-4000 or go to drama.cua.edu.