Photo by John Coogan Photography
“I recently lost thirty pounds and I’ve received a lot of positive attention. The problem with that is now everyone feels like they have to be supportive. I have to drive thirty miles to get a cookie. I had a friend stop me from eating a cookie and I said, ‘It’s only one cookie.’ And he still wouldn’t let me. He said it was a gateway cookie.”
Born into the DeCicco Family Markets supermarket family, Regina DeCicco just knew something waited for her other than the business her father and two uncles started. An internship at Barnard College brought her to Saturday Night Live, where she stayed on for five years working in set design long after college ended. The experience really let her know what she wanted to do.
“All of my family works in the grocery business, but I always wanted to do standup, so I’m kind of the odd man out in the family,” DeCicco says.
The SNL gig was both a blessing and a curse for her. She grew up a fan of the show and getting to work on it was a dream come true—but a dream that came with a price.
“I’ll never forget the night of the first show. I couldn’t believe I was really there,” DeCicco says. “It would’ve been so easy to stay at SNL forever, but one day I was talking to [former cast member] Horatio Sanz and he knew I wanted more. He told me I had to leave—now.”
DeCicco enrolled in a standup class to learn the fundamentals. “I was doing a show before my graduation and I had this weird feeling come over me. I thought, ‘Why am I telling these strangers all of this information about me?’” DeCicco describes that night as filled with amateur mistakes—stepping on her own lines, hiding behind the mic stand, and awkward timing. Still, she was surprised at her reaction to the performance.
“You wouldn’t think after that night that I’d ever want to do it again, but I couldn’t wait,” she says. DeCicco stays busy working the Westchester comedy rooms. She’s been on the bill several times at shows held at the Music Conservatory of Westchester in White Plains, she’s worked at the Spotlight Cafe on Central Avenue in Scarsdale, and at the White Plains Performing Arts Center.
“People are so ready for comedy here. They’ve been awesome and seem so happy to come to a show. In the City, where it’s so oversaturated, it feels like you have to prove yourself all the time.”