Heineken Casts Audience As Stars In 'Social Experiment'

What if you went to a play and found out you were the star?

Heineken hosted a one-night-only production at New York City's McKittrick Hotel, where unsuspecting attendees were invited to a play, soon to find out that they weren't just watching, they were the stars.

Heineken captured every moment of the March 11 event as people ventured through a labyrinth of daring scenes that enabled them to show their talents to the world.

Heineken debuts the brand's latest "social experiment" to encourage consumers to "cross their borders" with its 3½-minute digital video, "The Guest of Honor." 

Included at the end is a hyperlink to share it on Twitter with the hashtag #OpenYourWorld, the global ad theme the beer maker launched in 2011.

Wieden + Kennedy New York, Heineken's creative agency-of-record, created and produced "The Guest of Honor," including the theatrical production and video documenting the challenge. 

It joins Departure Roulette and Carol Karaoke in Heineken's series of social experiments that challenge consumers in "would you or wouldn't you" moments.

The evening began with a questionable elevator ride to the party of a mysterious billionaire and his eccentric friends. Several of the attendees were challenged to take the stage, moving through a variety of scenes to entertain the billionaire's friends, from telling jokes to a feisty heckler in a comedy club, to giving a tattoo to an intimidating ink fan, to auditioning for and joining a Bollywood shoot.

Heineken believes that everyone has a legendary side waiting to surface, and "The Guest of Honor" gave real people the chance to showcase that side to the world, says Belen Pamukoff, brand director, Heineken.

"The Guest of Honor" was developed in the spirit of Heineken's latest global television ad campaign, "The Odyssey," which celebrates the premise that everyone is legendary at something.

"Heineken saw immersive theater as the perfect setting to get people outside their comfort zone by creating a production that would move them from being mere spectators to the star of the show," Pamukoff says in a release. "'The Guest of Honor' is our latest effort to reveal the legendary talents of Heineken drinkers."

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