June 9 2014 12:00 AM

Cygnet Theater production spares no profanity -- or fun

Steven Lone and Sandra Ruiz in "The Motherf**cker with the Hat"
Photo courtesy of Cygnet Theatre

Let's not be coy. Even though the title of the play in production at Cygnet Theatre in Old Town is The Motherf**cker with the Hat, the script makes no attempt to censor or sweeten the 'MF' word, or any other word in the play that begins with the letter F. ---

This work by Stephen Adly Guirgis, directed by Rob Lutfy, is purposely profane-and that's what makes it so successful. Its characters-a parolee / addict, Jackie (Steven Lone, the clear standout in the cast), in love with a free and very sexy addict, Veronica (Sandra Ruiz); Jackie's duplicitous sponsor Ralph D (Laurence Brown); Jackie's gay cousin Julio (Esteban Andres Cruz); and Ralph D's fed-up lady, Victoria (Whitney Brianna Thomas)-are by and large not nice people. They're users, they're self-absorbed, they're motherfuckers. Yet they're also fun to watch.

How the story of these mismatched New Yorkers unfolds, and how funny it is in a twisted way when it does, is what makes The Motherf**cker with the Hat well worth your time. It's certainly not the fare we're used to seeing in Old Town's quaint barn-like theater, although Cygnet's last production was Spring Awakening, another bold, if less outrageous, show. Half of the fun of being in the audience at The Motherf**cker is catching glimpses of some members of the audience around you. Is this what they expected? Hell, they should have known from the title.

The play runs through June 22.


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