“I’m an entertainer, not a comedian. And entertainers come and go, apart from Walter Chiari. In fact, I don’t work at all, I do what I have done since I was a child when I made the whole class laugh». From the protagonists of “Mai dire gol”, such as Felice Caccamo and Peo Pericoli, to the impersonations of Josè Feliciano and Ray Charles, up to Cesare Maldini and Adriano Celentano. “Tutto Teo” is the show by the actor Teo Teocoli, on stage tonight at the Nestor theater in Frosinone. The show officially inaugurates the 2022-2023 theater season, born from the collaboration between the Municipality of Frosinone and Atcl, the multidisciplinary circuit of Lazio, supported by the Ministry of Culture and the Lazio Region, with the contribution of Banca Popolare del Frusinate. Teocoli’s show is a journey in which the audience is immersed in the funniest anecdotes of his life. To spend an evening of pure fun.
“Tutto Teo” stops in Frosinone. Is this your first time in the capital?
«I traveled all over Italy, even several times, and I missed Frosinone. I am very pleased to come to this city for the first time. I remember that there was a broadcast on the radio, it was called “The Reason in Mask”, and the gag “Gallarate and Frosinone” was on the air. It was an imaginary telephone conversation in which the protagonists cheerfully insulted each other. This is how I got to know this city, in the 1950s, and I’m very curious to see it».
Of all the imitated characters, which is the one that resembles you the most?
«An imitation that is very close to my heart is that of Cesare Maldini. It was the first. A Trieste with a particular voice, with almost unnatural tones. This aspect strikes me a lot. The imitation was a crazy boom and in the end I chose Fazio with whom I then made “Quelli che il calcio” and “Che tempo che fa”. But “Never say goal” always remains in my heart. Here I worked with Antonio Albanese, Aldo Giovanni and Giacomo, Gene Gnocchi. We were a group of trained artists, above all sportingly speaking. We parodied these broadcasts about soccer and other sports. For me it lasted 4 or 5 years, before taking other paths».
How has the way of doing shows changed since your beginnings?
«I started in the 60s when I was still a somewhat “unhinged” singer, because I didn’t know the words to the songs. But I also contributed to the growth of some groups such as “Camaleonti” and “Pfm”. And then there’s Adriano Celentano with whom I’ve been friends for sixty years. I did many shows with him, especially on television. In these years I didn’t do theater but I was a guest in big shows with Fiorello, Gianni Morandi, Enzo Arbore and Gigi Proietti. In short, with the greatest of the show. And today I tour the theaters. We visit the cities, we go to dinner, as it was once upon a time. In this we have kept the tradition. Over the years we evolve and the times remind you of what you then bring onto the stage, in a humorous and comical way. I’ve been doing this job for fifty years, maybe even more. I adapt to situations, to fashions. Above all, I talk a little about my vicissitudes. And I have combined more than one».
What is the secret to maintaining such a long career?
«You have to have talent and be gifted. We were born to do this job. I’ve never thought of doing anything else in my life. My big leap was the Milan cabaret with Enzo Jannacci, Cochi and Renato, Diego Abatantuono, Massimo Boldi, Giorgio Faletti, we were all there and we continued for more than ten years».
Over the years he has gotten to know several notable personalities. The meeting with the painter Salvador Dalì is known…
“I’m always nice or maybe I am. And above all, I’m never ashamed to be intrusive. Dalì I met him in Cadaqués, a town not far from the French border. At the time it was a fishing village and there was the painter’s house. He had gone down to the village, I approached him and sang to him “O sole mio”. We hit it off right away and I went to his house many times. At the time he was ninety years old and his wife was eighty. I also had the honor of entering his studio. I saw that he was making elephants with very fine legs. Sometimes I went to his house and they stayed together. He stuff from other times, from the 60s, and at the time anything could happen ».
What are the most important moments that you remember and that led you to be the artist you are today?
“There was a moment when I stopped, about thirty years ago. I didn’t feel like it anymore. Suddenly it occurred to me to make a satire of sport. And together with the other colleagues, already mentioned, we have created sports satire in Italy».
The thousand faces of Teo Teocoli. Tonight at the Nestor Theater