For fans of The Howard Stern Show, the name “Colt 40 Feinberg” should ring a bell. A veteran of voice acting and stand-up comedy, Neal Feinberg has made a name for himself portraying off-color characters on shows like Celebrity Deathmatch and American Dad. And, he’s going to be starring in the one-man show Fully Committed at Guild Hall on July 2. I chatted with Feinberg about the show, his career as a voice actor and his standup material.
Those who check out Fully Committed at Guild Hall are in for a treat as Feinberg portrays somewhere in the vicinity of 40 different characters. “Audience members can expect great, silly characters and a very New York, smart show,” Feinberg said. The show, primarily set in a ritzy New York City restaurant, features celebrities, snobs, prima donnas and more. “The pretentious, in an effort to get a table, will do anything to throw their weight around.”
“You’ll definitely see the outrageousness of an eclectic, wide variety of people,” Feinberg said. The show seems like a natural fit, making the transition from New York City to the East End, as Feinberg himself is quick to point out that a majority of the theatergoers like to laugh at themselves.
A great sense of humor is clearly a prerequisite for this show, so I asked Feinberg if he was worried about ruffling any East End feathers. “It’s funny, it’s literally the exact same crowd in the audience that I’m making fun of on stage. Hopefully, people have a sense of humor about themselves and are able to make fun of and laugh at themselves,” Feinberg said. “This is a total send-up of high society and all the billionaire pomposity that goes along with it. Hey man, someone’s gotta’ nail ’em, right?”
I was curious to learn more about Feinberg’s voice acting for videogames like Grand Theft Auto, cartoons like American Dad, as well as the various impressions he’s known for. “I’m primarily known as ‘Colt 40 Feinberg’ from the Stern show, a black comedian who hates white people and Howard would call me ‘the greatest black comedian who ever lived,’” Feinberg said. “I was also the voice of Richie T, one of the DJs in Grand Theft Auto 2. You listened to me while driving around, shooting people and committing crimes. Wholesome family entertainment.”
“I get to impersonate a lot of people I know in my everyday life,” Feinberg noted of Fully Committed. “I tweak them a little bit to form them into characters, but anyone with a finely tuned ear will hear traces of Owen Wilson, Howard Stern, Steve Buscemi and more in the show. I make them into everyday people.”
The show was written by Becky Mode, who developed the different characters while working in an upscale New York restaurant, “based on her real-life experience,” Feinberg explained. “That’s why there’s such a ring of
Feinberg’s a bit of a renaissance man. When not performing and crafting new characters, he’s also the Head Pro at a tennis club on the Upper East Side. “We cater to the same clientele who would frequent this restaurant, so I just found myself experiencing déjà vu when reading the script for Fully Committed,” Feinberg said. “I read the lead character, Sam, and decided that I was that guy. Memorizing a script with over 40 characters that are all distinct, three-dimensional people, that was a challenge.”
A veteran of stand-up, Feinberg thrives on working before a live crowd. “That’s what made me want to do it,” Feinberg said. “That’s what got me into it. I just hope the audience laughs their asses off and that they relate, which they totally will. We’ve all been through these terrible jobs where we’re the low man on the totem pole. This is the show. We’ve all been through hell at some point. I think people will find it hilarious. If there’s one show to see this summer, this is it. It’s not just stand-up. It’s not just a play. It’s a tour-de-force. A guaranteed great time in the Hamptons.”
Fully Committed, starring Neal Feinberg, plays at Guild Hall on July 2 at 8 p.m., For more information, visit guildhall.org.