Capital Fringe Review: ‘The Underdeveloped and Overexposed Life and Death of Deena Domino’ By Derek Mong

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The Underdeveloped and Overexposed Life and Death of Deena Domino follows the life (and, well, death) of child star Deena Domino as her stardom waxes and wanes (mostly wanes) over the course of her belabored 85-year life. A series of hilarious over-the-top sketches by Leah Rudick and Katie Hartman of the Skinny Bitch Jesus Meeting comedy troupe in New York City, Deena Domino somehow manages to incorporate Shakespearean prose, a monster-human interbreed baby, a stabbing that leaves one actress a Cyclops for the rest of the show, and Adderall-laced pixy stix into a coherent and hilarious hour-long journey into the life of an attention-craved reality TV star who is well past her prime. If this sounds like your cup of tea, then, frankly, I’m concerned for you; but, if you’re looking for a Fringe show that incorporates the best of what Fringe has to offer, then you should definitely check this performance out.

Katie Hartman and Leah Rudick of NYC sketch comedy duo 'Skinny Bitch Jesus Meeting' writers and performers of 'The Underdeveloped and Overexposed Life and Death of Deena Domino.'

As with almost all Fringe shows, the show does take a while to get into. But, once you’ve let down your guard and immersed yourself in the format of the show, it becomes quite the comedic experience. With minimal props and sets, but clever staging and witty videos interspersed between the sketches, Deena Domino was nothing like I expected, but everything I wanted from my first Capital Fringe experience: smart, yet not-too-serious; well-performed and poignant.

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Derek Mong
Derek is a DC-native and a graduate of Duke University (B.A Political Science). During his junior/senior year at Duke, Derek served as a Marketing and Public Relations intern at the Nederlander-operated Durham Performing Arts Center. At his internship, Derek developed marketing campaigns and assisted press in coverage of the four major Broadway engagements that season: Memphis, The Addams Family, Bring It On, and Wicked. Upon graduating from Duke in 2012, Derek joined a tech and management consulting firm in Arlington, VA, where he currently works. Derek enjoys frequenting the DC-NYC theatre scene; when not in the theatre, Derek can probably be found running outdoors, blogging, playing the piano, traveling the country, and, of course, tweeting (@derekmong). Derek is currently obsessed with Disney's 'Newsies' on Broadway.