Whit Leyenberger Stumbles His Way To 1,000 Performances In DRUNK SHAKESPEARE

By: Jul. 18, 2018
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Drunk Shakespeare

New York City actor Whit Leyenberger is celebrating his 1,000th performance in the Off-Broadway smash hit, Drunk Shakespeare. The self-proclaimed "drinking club with a Shakespeare problem," Drunk Shakespeare is an irreverent and outrageous interactive theatrical experience now in its fourth year at The Lounge at Roy Arias Stages (777th 8th Avenue). Leyenberger, an original cast member, has performed in the modern mash-up of Shakespeare, comedy, and improvisation 1,000 times as of today, Wednesday, July 18, 2018. The only cast member to have played every character in the show, Leyenberger has consumed 1,484 drinks, or roughly 17.5 gallons of Tequila during his tenure.

Directed by David Hudson and produced by Brass Jar Productions (Trainspotting Live), the evening begins with one actor drinking more than five shots of liquor before attempting to lead the cast through a Shakespeare play in under 90 minutes. The results are messy and outrageous. Every night is different and truly anything can happen.

"I was truly sobered when my producers told me I was about to hit 1,000 performances in Drunk Shakespeare. I mean, I honestly don't remember anything," said Whit in response to the momentous occasion. "I'm still deciding if this accomplishment is most impressive for my endurance as an actor or for the resilience of my liver. In all seriousness, I'm thrilled to be a part of this insanely fun, off-the-wall NYC experience. The show, the cast, and the crew have become such an integral part of my life over the last four years - you could say it's in my blood(stream)."

"Over the years Whit's performance in our show has aged and matured like a fine wine," said producer Scott Griffin. "His contributions to the production are numerous and he's one of the kindest, most fun-loving people (drunk or sober) we've had the pleasure of working with. Cheers to 1,000 more!"

The company of Drunk Shakespeare kicked-off a week-long celebration of Leyenberger's milestone performance this past weekend. Cast members from the throughout the show's lengthy run returned to roast him during participatory moments of the show. In one scene where his character clumsily attempts to woo a female audience member, he singled out his wife, whom he met doing the exact same bit to her - then a stranger - three years ago. Finally, Leyenberger was presented with a cooler full of one thousand frozen dollar bills in response to his off-the-cuff statement that he wanted "cold, hard cash" to commemorate his achievement.

Performances of Drunk Shakespeare take place on Monday and Thursday at 7:30 PM; Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday at 8 PM, and Sunday at 7 PM with late shows on Friday and Saturday at 10 PM. Tickets are $55 for balcony seating, $69 for mezzanine seating, and $89 for stage-side seats which get you closer to the action and the drinking. One exclusive luxury experience is auctioned off at every performance to the highest bidder or purchased beforehand for $500. The King or Queen Experience includes a regal throne and crown for two, a bottle of Moet & Chandon champagne, fine caviar, handmade chocolates, two signature cocktails with premium liquor, and decision-making powers during the show, including "Off with his head!" or "Pardon the fool!" and other fun surprises.

For more information, visit DrunkShakespeare.com.


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