I recently saw the play Drunk Talk at the Dragonfly in Hollywood, and I got to say, it was pretty clever stuff. As soon as you walk in, you know you’re in for a different theater experience. The place is setup like a regular bar — McSwiggins — complete with bartenders serving drinks and what looked to be some drunks lounging on bar stools. Tables and chairs were set up facing the bar and people were just hanging out, waiting for the show to start.

As I stood at the bar, ordered some Scotch and waited for a seat, an old chatty dude in a Hawaiian shirt asked me if I knew what this thing was all about. He said he knew the bartender and he could get me hooked up. I smiled, told him I didn’t know much about what to expect and said no thank you to his drink offer.

Once everyone took their seats, the play started unfolding. The cocktail waitress at the bar continued to serve drinks throughout the show, but the bartender who served me my Scotch was actually Steve Sears, the actor who plays the Bartender and the old drunk guy was already-in-character Bruce Schroffel, who plays Earl, the old timer, loud-mouth regular drunk that you see in every bar.

As the show started, I thought this whole setup was pretty cool. Rather than being detached from the stage action, the audience felt like they were actual participants in the play. Cute girls in the front would get a surprise hand on the shoulder from Earl. Everyone was instructed to salute and drink whenever any character mentioned the word McSwiggins. At one point the cast members even passed out shots to everyone in attendance. A lively, interactive time was had by all.

The whole play was written as an outrageous, farcical comedy. Regulars at a bar lament over the fact that their beloved drinking hole is going to be shut down. Drunk talk ensues. Tobias Jelinek, who played Joe, was a total scene stealer. I also really liked the Mayor, played by Kim Estes. The entire cast pulled it all off, let everyone in on the action and made sure that everyone had a good time. You can’t really ask for more.

More >