Remarking that theaters are more intimate environments that help capture and keep an audience’s attention, Uncle Floyd (Floyd Divino), variety show entertainer entertainer, will appear at the Bellmore Theater on Sunday, December 13, at 7:30 p.m. for a Holiday Show that picks up where he left off in Bellmore years ago: fronting a fabulous entertainment show while playing piano and telling some very funny original jokes.
“I sense the audience better in a theater,” Uncle Floyd told Your NewsMag recently about his upcoming gig at the theater. “You can capture the audience’s attention better when there is no one walking in front of you to serve drinks or dinner at tables” because there are no distractions, he added.
Uncle Floyd has been a mainstay on many peoples’ entertainment menu for decades, when he starred at all the Long Island comedy clubs, including the old Brokerage Cabaret Club in Bellmore operated by Gary Smith. Now, Smith’s NYEntertainmentclub.com looks to bring back the tried-and-true entertainment routines Uncle Floyd popularized at the cabaret club decades ago, three-to-four times a year, with a show that could develop into an annual stop in Bellmore.
“Uncle Floyd is one of the true original performers today who still does a complete show, from comedy to singing, to bringing on guests to playing the piano,” remarked Smith.
Reminding Your NewMag that he presented Uncle Floyd’s Holiday Show for 20 years at the cabaret club, he called Floyd the consummate entertainer who is a first-class piano player as well.“He works with the audience – which is why he likes an intimate theater surrounding the best, takes requests and will play special songs if asked,” Smith continued.
“I’m self-taught,” said Floyd of his piano virtuosity, “a pianologist.” Saying he learned by ear, he began working at 16 in clubs, working his way into vaudeville and starting in Dick Richards Wonderful World of Shows. He eventually worked in the Follies Burlesque. “Vaudeville, he said, “was an art form, a poor man’s Broadway.” Floyd says vaudeville in no longer around, but he models his variety show after some of Vaudeville’s basic acts.
His musical repertoire is gleaned from an encyclopedic knowledge developed from years of radio shows on Long Island as well as in New Jersey, where he lives. He can be heard on his Uncle Floyd’s Garage Sale playing from a collection of over 1 million records at WVOX 1460 AM on Long Island, or playing Italian songs at WFDU 89.1 in New Jersey.
“I’m a variety entertainer who draws from all this music because my parents were show people from Europe,” and he carries on that tradition. “It’s all comedy” he said of his live performances.
But, with seven children, having been married three times and observing the world a bit differently than others might, he uses those observations and experiences to develop and hone is comedy routines throughout the show. “I’m not stand up,” he said, I’m considered old-school, I don’t bash the president(s).”
He did mention that his material is for adult audiences. “What I perform is not for 8-10 year olds,” he remarked.
When Smith hosted Uncle Floyd Holiday Shows at the cabaret club, he said it brought “genuine joy and happiness to the people” to start off the Holiday season right. “People would bring gifts to the club, exchange gifts with Floyd, with the club and among themselves.”
Tickets for the December 13 show can be purchased at www.nyentertainmentclub.com, by calling 785-4234, or by calling the theater at 783-3199. Tickets are $25, and the show begins at 7:30 p.m.
The theater is at 222 Petite Avenue, in Bellmore.