Cheers! Johnny Pool, the celebrity bartender best known for his morning radio work with Elvis Duran and the Z Morning Zoo, is making his stage debut in My Big Gay Italian Funeral off-Broadway for one-night-only on March 16.
Starring and written by Anthony Wilkinson, My Big Gay Italian Funeral (and its companion piece My Big Gay Italian Wedding) are both loosely based on his own wacky Italian family. Funeral tells the story of Anthony Pinnunziato (Wilkinson), a gay Italian-American who with his large family, is mourning the death of his father. Pool will play the appropriately named role of Uncle Johnny.
Pool has been an institution in the gay community for over 52 years as a bartender in Cherry Grove, Fire Island. Under the moniker Uncle Johnny, he makes appearances every Monday on the Elvis Duran and the Morning Show mixing cocktails.
Along with Wilkinson, the cast of Funeral includes Hugh Hysell as Maurizio, Donna Castellano as Angela, Marissa Perry as Maria, Debra Toscano as Toniann, Meagan Robar as Connie/Eva/Aunt Donna, Erik Ransom as Vidal, Chad Kessler as Rabbi Horowitz/Lou, David Demato as Peter, Mustafa Gatollari as Dominick, Beth Dzuricky as Ondine, and Marie Fontaine rounds out the ensemble.