Frankenmatt’s Frank Caeti and Matthew Craig are Piccolo Fringe regulars who love performing in Charleston. Not surprisingly, the audiences second that emotion. With their knack for creating characters, dropping pop-culture references, staging musical interludes, and crafting quirky storylines, the comedy duo keeps the audience laughing.
In 2003 the two visited Charleston for the first time with Chicago’s famed Second City, and then formed their own comedy duo, Frankenmatt in 2007, before returning to join Piccolo Fringe in 2008. Based in Los Angeles, the pair of funnymen have either performed on or written for such high profile television shows as Mad TV, Reno 911, Saturday Night Live, and The Office.
Their current sketch comedy show, American Imperil, includes new material and revives some of their favorite characters, like the incorrigible Charlemagne LeRoy. In the show, Matt convinces Frank to join him on a road trip to Michigan to seek out an inspiring Congressional candidate, Jerry McGavin, who’s committed to “keeping it real.” After that, things get real silly; there’s a commercial for an enchilada-serving Irish pub with a Wang Chung night and two musical numbers, one a Lord of the Dance-style bit and another involving Michael Jackson’s “Man in the Mirror.” And on they roll, from scene to scene and character to character, each unique and defined.
Caeti and Craig are not afraid to take risks and offend audiences. The sexual content and foul language in American Imperil make the show inappropriate for the wee ones — and the more prudish adults. Some scenes fell flat with the audience, including one in which the comedy duo ridiculed a brain-damaged accident victim.
With sharp lighting and sound cues from Theatre 99 house technician Sean Sullivan, the transitions are clear and smooth, freeing the pair to morph in and out of character. Their comedic chemistry is evident, and with stocky Caeti at eye level with Craig’s chest, their ironic physical proportions provide instant physical humor.
Frankenmatt exudes funny from head to toe. Their love affair with Charleston continues for another year.