The Wedding Is Fake, but the Party Is Real

The Wedding Is Fake, but the Party Is Real


The fake wedding is telling of the social paradox of a country that remains traditional, and overwhelmingly culturally Roman Catholic, even as the divorce rate hovers around 50 percent and civil unions become accepted.

The spoof is at once a nod to tradition and a subversion of it. It has also become a thriving business. The events are successful enough that Mr. Bottinelli and his friends now stage them in Buenos Aires about once a month, sometimes more.

They have recently taken them on the road to other major Argentine cities as well as to Uruguay, with plans to expand soon to Chile, Mexico and the United States.

At the events, Mr. Bottinelli explained, they can take or leave whatever they want from a typical wedding. Not surprisingly, they kept the fun parts.

Over the course of the evening, which stretched until 6 a.m., there were two wedding rehearsals and two wedding ceremonies, each with an exchange of bogus vows. The actors who were the bride and groom in the first wedding became the witnesses in the second, and vice versa.

Backstage, the actors changed roles and had their hair and makeup done, with special attention paid to Veronica Pacenza, 26, who played the groom’s grandmother.

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