Ventriloquist Uni renunion

Ventriloquist Hannah Leskosky is shown with her friend, Marty. The University Laboratory High School graduate will be performing Sunday, Oct. 6, 2019, at her class's 10th reunion in Urbana.

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University Laboratory High School Class of 2009 graduate Hannah Leskosky will be performing at her 10th reunion Sunday in Urbana.

So will Marty, who is not a graduate, she told staff writer Paul Wood.

Marty is a unicorn puppet.

Leskosky is living and performing in Los Angeles.

If her name sounds familiar, it’s because she’s the daughter of News-Gazette film writer Richard Leskosky and May Berenbaum, the head of the Department of Entomology at the University of Illinois since 1992.

This Five Questions feature offers four for Lesksosky and one for Marty.

How does it feel to come back to Urbana?

I am excited! I haven’t been back in a long time, and Uni was always such a supportive community, especially when it came to creativity.

It provided me many opportunities to explore my interest in comedy on stage, so being asked to come back allows me to thank the school for recognizing the value of such a ... nontraditional career path.

How about you, Marty?

I don’t care.

I don’t know these people.

What have you two been up to?

I was recently in a few comedy festivals in Los Angeles and Chicago and continue to perform in local comedy clubs.

In addition to upcoming gigs around Southern California, I’m getting a show ready for next summer’s Hollywood Fringe Festival and a main stage show at Vent Haven Ventriloquist Convention, the largest ventriloquial gathering in the world.

What have been some of your highlights?

I was on “The Gong Show,” I’ve filmed another YouTube show that hasn’t aired yet (“Good Mythical Morning”), and I have my own YouTube channel (though it’s not updated as much as my mother would encourage me to).

Marty has his own Instagram (@marty.unicorn), and I think he’s writing a book, but I’m not sure; he hasn’t told me.

Any special honors?

I’ve received a People’s Choice Award from the Vent Haven Ventriloquist Convention on four separate occasions and chosen as Best of the Fest in three comedy festivals in 2018.


Paul Wood is a reporter at The News-Gazette. His email is, and you can follow him on Twitter (@pvawood).