PITTSFIELD — Nick Cearley and Lauren Molina are fearless performers.
The comedic musical duo don't have to picture the audience in their underwear to overcome stage-fright — instead, they strip down to the unmentionables.
Dubbed The Skivvies, Cearley and Molina will almost bare all, while keeping the crowds in stitches during their Pittsfield debut this weekend at The Colonial Theatre. The shows go on — as the clothes come off — 8 and 10:30 p.m. on Saturday and 7 p.m. on Sunday.
The Skivvies' Berkshire debut was last year at Williamstown Theatre Festival, with a return engagement at WTF set for July 17 and 18.
The four-year-old New York City-based act may seem risque — Cearley plucking a ukulele in his briefs, Molina playing a cello in bra and panties — but the pair's clean-cut musical parodies and original songs eventually turn stares to laughter and applause.
"The oldest trick in the book is to take your clothes off so people notice you, but you have to back it up with clever songs and strong material," Molina said in a telephone interview with Cearley.
"When you're in your underwear and so exposed, the audience is on your side," Cearley added.
The GQ/Victoria's Secret facade aside, Cearley and Molina are accomplished on and Off-Broadway actors who teamed up long before The Skivvies
The two native Midwesterners first worked together in 2003 as members of a traveling children's theater troupe, becoming best friends.
Molina's stage credits include Johanna in a Broadway revival of "Sweeney Todd" (2005) and three years later, originating the role of Regina/Candi in the 1980s Off-Broadway musical "Rock of Ages" that went to Broadway in April 2009.
Cearley was part of the ensemble cast of the 2006 U.S. tour of "All Shook Up" and performed in the 2014 Off-Broadway revival of "Pageant — The Musical."
Between acting gigs, Cearley and Molina would occasionally perform music shows together. In January 2012, they wrote "Hardbody Hoedown" — their only truly dirty song. They wanted to post it on YouTube, but Molina couldn't decide what to wear for the video. Since it was a stripped down arrangement of other songs, they felt it made sense to perform in their underwear.
The parody about body parts was a sensation. Six months later, The Skivvies went live, unveiling their buff-bods and accompanying musical hilarity.
The audience reception and critical reviews have The Skivvies going from sporadic engagements to full-time act.
"It's almost become a 9-to-5 job, no longer a part-time job," Cearley noted.
The undie-duo even get guest appearances from Broadway actors, who are usually willing to disrobe with their hosts.
"It's now a celebrated event to be in a Skivvies show," Molina said.
The Skivvies also work well with Cearley and Molina fully clothed.
"We have performed for high schools and galas — at this point, it doesn't matter what we wear," Molina said.
Eventually, The Skivvies' youthful physiques will succumb to gravity, making clothing more than optional.
"I am so ready for that day when I am 80 years old playing a uke in my underwear," Cearley quipped.
Contact Dick Lindsay at 413-496-6233
What: The Skivvies — comedy-pop duo of Nick Cearley and Lauren Molina
When: 8 & 10:30 p.m. Saturday; 7 p.m. Sunday (post-show reception at Hotel on North)
Where: The Colonial Theatre, 111 South St., Pittsfield
Tickets: $40; show and post-show reception — $65
How: (413) 997-4444; berkshiretheatregroup.org; in person at Colonial Theatre box office