I’m sure most people who are of a certain age (say, in their 40s?) have seen The Rocky Horror Picture Show, staring Tim Curry as Dr. Frank-N-Furter… And maybe more than a few have been to a midnight showing of that movie at a movie theater. However, how many people have experienced a live performance of it?
A live performance may come in many flavors. When I lived in Los Angeles, we saw it where people dressed up and participated in the theater, and more interesting is where actors will be on the stage, and perform along with the audio playing and the actual movie on the screen behind them, and yet another way has been for the video to play, while actors and a band perform along with it (all while the audience participates)…
If you have NEVER seen the RHPS, you can catch it on the FOX Movie Channel on Halloween… All night long…. You will need an open mind, and maybe an adult beverage. More information can be obtained at http://www.rockyhorror.com/. This movie has nothing to do with “horror”, it is a rock-n-roll tribute to Sci-Fi movies of the past, with a naughty / risque flare. I don’t recommend it for immature people, or those who are easily offended.
This past Saturday, Oct-22-2010, at midnight, my wife Pamela, daughter Megan and her friend Nick went with me to the Warehouse Theatre’s production of The Rocky Horror Show. Prior to this, I had only seen it performed in the stage show manner once, and to be quite honest, it wasn’t fantastic. It was as good as amateurs could do, and everyone had a great time, but it wasn’t a “production”, it was a party.
Pamela, Megan and Nick had never seen any form of RHPS other than the movie, and didn’t know what to expect. I was not certain how it was going to be performed either since as I mentioned previously, I have seen it in various formats.
The Warehouse Theatre production is a full stage show, there is absolutely no tie to the movie itself. All scenes are performed by the actors themselves, all music is from a live band.
For those who love the movie, your first thought may be, “This is going to stink”, because as everyone knows, it is very hard to pull off a well known number such as “Sweet Transvestite” and not be compared (unfavorably) with Tim Curry’s version. Likewise, the other characters from the motion picture are very dynamic and difficult to reproduce. Admittedly, I went in expecting somewhat of a lackluster show. In the words of Magenta, “I ask for nothing”. Then Frank’s reply: “And you shall receive it… In abundance!!!!”
That was not the case at all. The actors that portrayed the main characters were unbelievable! Will Ragland brought a new twist to Frank, without trying to duplicate his every nuance, and Rocky… Ohhhh Rocky, he was far better than the original Rocky in the movie! Better in every way… He sang his own parts (as did all the actors), and he looked the part. (My wife and daughter, and just about everyone were fixated on this guy’s genuinely beautiful physique… Uhmm, okay, that sounded weird for ME to say that, but it’s true).
These actors had to do something that Tim Curry and his movie cast never had to worry with, they had to perform while the audience shouted out all kinds of off the wall comments, as is the tradition with RHPS. The actors managed to keep straight faces, and use a good bit of improv to interact with the audience, which made the show all the more fun! Audience participation is a major part of this, and there are guides on the internet that will show you what to do, what to say, when to say it, etc.
We purchased the “audience participation pack”, which included light sticks (since flames are dangerous), confetti, newspaper etc. No rubber gloves or noisemakers as some scenes from the movie are not present, such as the dinner/birthday party scene, where you get to say “Meatloaf again????”. But, not missed, and I’m sure were not part of the original stage production.
I’m a technical kind of guy, and very critical when it comes to audio and lighting, so I will add this in for those of you who are like me and love to pick things apart. The audio was absolutely perfect. Good levels, and great control, especially when you take into consideration the number of open mics involved. The lighting could not have been improved upon.
Every number performed by the band was well orchestrated, the mix was low, but necessary in order to have legible vocals. I only wish I could have played guitar or bass (I even emailed the Warehouse Theatre and asked if they needed a guitarist or bass player, but they had already put their band together by that time).
The remaining shows are probably sold out by now, even though they added some extra performances in November, so if you want to attend and see what all this is about, call TODAY – The box office number is 864.235.6948 or you can visit their website for more information.
My hat is off to the cast and the crew for a superb job! We had a marvelous evening out (early morning rather) and as always, with the Warehouse Theatre, it didn’t break the bank like it would have at other venues in Greenville.
Yeah, I know, this has absolutely nothing to do with Computer Service, Computer Repair or even Business, but even hard working people have to take a break and enjoy themselves every once in a while. I highly recommend it.