Albany Times Union (December 9, 2010) - 'Those Two Guys bringing new comedy show to The Linda' - By: Steve Barnes
Dave Cox and Pat Ferri own a private plane. It seems unlikely that many, or any, other comedians-clowns-buskers-jugglers can say as much. Minor point: The 10-foot-long biplane, with a 14-foot wingspan, does not fly. Instead, it's the largest, most expensive prop yet for the locally based performing duo known as Those Two Guys, whose other equipment include more conventional tools of their craft such as unicycles, ramps and juggling implements. Given that they sit in, climb around and generally imperil themselves on the plane, perhaps it is more properly considered a piece of the set than it is a prop. No matter. The plane gets its second outing on Saturday, when Cox and Ferri bring their new show, "Comedy for the New Depression," to The Linda in Albany. The 90-minute performance showcases their skills in physical dexterity and balance, clowning, juggling, stunts and what they generally call "dangerous comedy" to tell the story of a pair of Maine fishermen who fly the catch of the day to their aunt's Chicago restaurant. Calamity ensues, told largely in the style of silent-film slapstick. The pair got their start as a duo three years ago, following solo appearances on the same bill at a variety show in Chatham. Finding similarities and complements in their performing styles and ambitions, Cox, 35, and Ferri, who's a decade older, began working jointly. They knit together some of their respective routines, conceived and wrote new segments and, by this summer, had a full evening's entertainment. The title invokes both the silent-era style of physical comedy they perform and what's going on in the economy. "There's definitely a '20s-'30s feel to the show, and the title refers to that time and to now -- though now they're just calling it a recession -- as well as to how people may be feeling a little down," says Ferri. "This is a little something to lift you out of that mood."
Among the elements they've incorporated into "Comedy for the New Depression" is Cox's stunt in which he jumps into a pair of pants. "There's the old saying that everybody puts their pants on one leg at a time," says Cox. "Well, I didn't want to do that anymore." In the bit, Cox holds his trousers in front of his waist, leaps straight upward and drops his legs into the pants. He's done the stunt for Jay Leno on "The Tonight Show," and after he put a video online, a Levi's commercial began featuring a version of the bit. "None of them could really jump into them off the floor, and they were using really big pants," says Cox, who has been performing for 15 years and makes a living from the work, as does Ferri. Cox says, "I contacted Calvin Klein when I was going on the (Leno) show to see if I could wear their underwear for money, but they never got back to me." "Comedy for the New Depression" is Those Two Guys' first full-evening show with a complete story line, rather than disconnected routines presented in a variety-show format. They envision it as a touring show that, because its humor is visual and story basic, could be performed around the world without concern about language difficulties. This weekend's performance will be recorded and edited down to a preview version for a press kit that will be shopped to agents and managers. To help with publicity and marketing, Cox and Ferri turned to local comedian Greg Aidala, a tireless and savvy promoter, who's aboard as producer and host, roles he often plays in comedy shows around the region.
"We're at a point now ... where we're asking ourselves, 'Are we going to move forward in entertainment or basically cash it in?' We have the attitude of, 'Yeah, let's do it,' " says Aidala. "Our hearts are behind this. We think this is the show to really go for it with. It seriously could work. Stuff like this is not going on around the country. It's certainly not coming to Albany. We think we've got a real chance with this."