Regie Cabico is a master slam poet/stand up comic. He is currently performing in a return engagement of his solo show at fallFRINGE after a successful run this summer at Capital Fringe. You might know Regie as half of the hosting team at DC’s Monday evening Musical Theatre/Poetry extravaganza LA-TI-DO. He has worked with big name acts all over the country and tours regularly to colleges with his unique brand of humor. You have three more chances to catch Regie in action this week before his show ends it’s run at Fort Fringe-Bedroom on Saturday. This is my current show and take it from me it’s a real hoot. Regie’s talent is something and here is your chance to see a master of his craft do what he does best.
Where did you get your training as a performer?
I actually started as an actor in Washington, DC. I was in high school and studied at Programs for Children & Youth. My first role was playing a servant in Scena Theatre’s Production of Tropical Madness. I remember the old Source Theater and the old 14th Street neighborhood. I left for NYU and studied musical theater and acting at Tisch School of the Arts. My first two years at Circle in the Square were horrible for me. In retrospect I understand what they were trying to do but I should have gone to Experimental Theater Wing or maybe Stella Adler. I later worked with Linda Lavin, Barbara Cook and Tovah Feldshuh and they gave me my confidence back as an actor. I look at performing slam poems like delivering showstoppers.
What got you interested in performing and writing poetry?
Upon graduating, I tried cabaret, standup comedy and before going to law school or getting my massage certificate. I picked up AsianAmerican poetry anthologies and Queer anthologies. It was the early 90s and the multicultural boom was everywhere in the East Village. I wrote poems performed them like I was at an audition off book and really angsty. My first poems were published and I was on tour with Smashing Pumpkins, The Beastie Boys & Courtney Love. So I was hooked. I could be me and not have to be a servant.
You are the co-host of DC’s weekly Musical Theatre/Poetry extravaganza LA-TI-DO. Did you think it would become as popular as it has?
Yes and No. I knew the power and community of the Spoken Word Scene in DC and that Slam Poetry and Musical Theater had a common thread of storytelling and passion. When I met DonMike, it was like seeing my younger self and I knew that he would be better off if we started our own series. I honestly just wanted to sing again. I love how we are adding to the theater community and building bridges to NY.
How do you best describe your latest solo production ?
The show is a compilation of my work since I moved to DC. The topics of travel, dating and growing older are a big part of it but I also think the show has funny and life-affirming moments. The show is a unique form composed of poetry, 2 stories and a performance art piece, I developed as a member of the NY Neo-futurist in Too Much Light Makes The Baby Go Blind. I loved working with my director Matt Ripa because we never over thought the structure. The show is ribald and goes as far as Margaret Cho would go but I think I bring the poetic and reflective feel that makes people laugh and then go in for the gut punch.
What advice can you give to a performer who wants to start performing poetry?
Read poetry and do you. Be you. You have 3 minutes to say something, What do you want to say?