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Our brief chat with Nick Cearley from The Skivvies

Written by Stephen Hunt

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the skivvies performing on stage

Thanks for sitting down with us today! Our understanding is that you two met on a children’s theater tour in 2013 and instantly clicked. How did you go from performing for kids to singing in your underwear?

We actually met on a children’s tour ten years prior, in 2003!! We both got our equity cards together and hit it off immediately with similar comedic and musical styles. We made music as just “Nick and Lauren” until 2012 until we decided to do stripped down arrangements, like we always had been doing, except we decided to strip down physically and never comment on the fact we were in our underwear. It’s like a costume for us.  

You started on YouTube, so how did you feel hitting the “publish” button on that first YouTube video and did you ever expect your videos to become so popular?

Haha! I specifically remember us being very nervous about that first “publish” button and saying to each other “well, if it is a terrible idea, we can just delete it and it never happened!” We had no idea what we were in for.   

What were the reactions of your family and friends when they found out you were performing in your underwear in public? Were they supportive or did anyone try to talk you out of it?

No one ever tried to talk us out of it. It seemed to be very embraced, and quickly. My mom said for a while that she wished she could show grandma but that phase definitely passed. Some of our earlier online comments were “ you guys are too talented. You don’t need to take off your clothes.” And to that I reply, “well if we hadn’t, you wouldn’t have clicked!” We are very aware of the “gimmick” of it all. A lot of people may think we haven’t thought about every move we make but we have likely overthought everything, in fact.   

How do you choose your guest performers and are first timers usually nervous or excited about performing so exposed?

We have a lot of regulars; Skivvies “royalty” we call them (guests that perform with us on the regular). But when we do get a newbie, there are typically questions but it’s all very collaborative. At the end of the day, it is really about the music and comedy in addition to being completely comfortable. I always love when people are surprised how chill we are about the whole thing. From my perspective, everyone is excited to do it and hides their nerves well or else they probably wouldn’t do it! Also, it’s important to note, we don’t ask anyone to wear their underwear. We just ask people to play the game. Whatever way they feel they want to express themselves that is appropriate for their song. If you want to wear a cute dress, wear a cute dress!  

The energy at your shows is incredible and the audience really gets into it! What’s the craziest thing that’s happened during a show?

We do a song that is improvised every show using an audience member's cell phone. A random text message thread is chosen and musicalized. So with that song, we have really run the gamut with crazy crazy messages. I guess another thing that was crazy that happened to me personally was in 2015. We did a show at the venue formerly known as 42 West. I was flipping through the photo gallery of the show the next day to find a moment where my actual ball fell out of the side of my underwear. I had to write Playbill and ask them to take the pic down, though I have laughed now for years about it. 

You’re known for your unique mashups. Are there any songs that you keep trying to fuse together but can’t seem to make work?

If certain songs don’t blend well together, we will not try to force an unhappy marriage. 

You’ve had some really noteworthy performances and coverage. But let's put it into the universe - where or what would you want to perform but haven’t yet? Basically, what’s your dream gig?

We would love to host an awards ceremony on TV. We would love to have a TV show that is a hybrid of Broad City and Flight of the Conchords where we could recap and recreate some of the ridiculousness we have experienced with The Skivvies.  

What can we expect next from The Skivvies?

We would like to release an album this year of our arrangements. We have a few singles out there on all the music platforms but we don’t have a full album. We would also like to really focus on the TV Show prospects.  We tour quite a bit all year long, especially this time of year, but we are also in the process of booking our a Rocky Horror Skivvies Show nationally. We do our own spin on the entire score of Rocky Horror. It’s my favorite show of the year.  

Without music or performing, where do you think you’d be?

I don’t know how to do anything else. So I’d probably just be staring at my dog like “hey.” 

We all have them - what’s your favorite musical guilty pleasure?

All my music is a guilty pleasure. I am a Britney Spears fanatic.   

You two spend a lot of time in your underwear, so what are your favorite styles of underwear to wear and why?

I prefer briefs. Always have. I am most comfortable in them. I’ve never been uncomfortable walking around anywhere in my undies. In the summer, days could go by and I won’t put on clothes haha. Lauren prefers Victoria’s Secret very much.   

What do you look for when buying underwear?

Softness, comfy, flattering. Not too tight.  

And what’s your favorite color for underwear?

I go through phases. Right now, I’m into all white or all red.  

Finally what do you think of Hunt Underwear?

The material is absolutely the softest material I’ve ever had against my skin. It’s super flattering. I have performed in them and also worn for “normal” days and I can’t wait for the next time I get to wear them, truly.

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Thanks for chatting, Nick! You're an incredible performer and we had so much fun working with you. We are so happy to have you as part of the extended Hunt Underwear family!

For those interested, Nick is wearing our blue briefs from the Classic Collection.

Feel free to contact Nick @clearlycearley or The Skivvies @theskivviesnyc on Instagram.