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'Rocky Horror' veterans, virgins invited to Stage West production

Those with delicate sensibilities might want to think twice about going to see the Rocky Horror Show, the musical spoof of science fiction and B-movie horror flicks, playing Thursday and weekends through July 16 at Stage West Community Playhouse.

If the past is any indicator, however, there are more than enough, um, senseless people in the area to fill the evening and midnight presentations of the ever-so-much-fun cult favorite.

In fact, the show was so popular when Stage West first did it in 2001 that audiences insisted it be brought back a year later for another outing, which was reportedly even more successful.

And it's not just around here.

Rocky Horror made its stage debut in London in 1973, was made into a Hollywood movie in 1975, has toured the world countless times, been on Broadway twice (1975 and 2000), and been produced by hundreds — if not thousands — of community and professional theater companies.

Even so, there are still some Rocky Virgins (people who have never seen the movie or the stage show) who need to know what they're in for before they line up for a ticket.

Howls.

Shrieks.

Outrageous language.

Scandalous costumes.

And that's just the audience.

There's even more (slightly) shocking stuff on the stage.

Rocky Horror is the tale of two young lovers, Brad (Ryan Rogers, Mortimer in Arsenic and Old Lace) and Janet (Misty Hornsby, Vera in Funny Girl) driving through a storm one night when they have a flat tire and run through the rain to take refuge in a nearby mysterious castle (Over at the Frankenstein Place).

They're greeted by the ominous Riff Raff (Michael Jeffrey, HAMI, Heaven Can Wait), his sister Magenta (Jessica Virginia, HAMIs, Everything in the Garden, The Foreigner) and the groupie Columbia (Leslee Starz, HAMI, The Uninvited), who join to do the show's biggest and best-known number Time Warp. (Note: Don't be surprised if half the audience joins in.)

Brad and Janet try to leave, but are stopped by the cross-dressing Dr. Frank-N-Furter (Jeff Germann, Babberly in Charley's Aunt), who, after making them doff their dripping outer garments, takes them to his laboratory and shows them his creation, a blond, well-built man he calls Rocky Horror (Nik Franklin).

From there, the show goes on a roller-coaster of murder and mayhem (heavy on the mayhem), with the sex-crazed Dr. Frank-N-Furter seducing any and all, with the sex and violence getting more and more horrendous and hilarious.

Interesting trivia 1: Michael Jeffrey also played Riff Raff in the 2001 and 2002 productions.

Interesting trivia 2: Germann, who plays Dr. Frank-N-Furter in drag, played the cross-dressing "aunt" in Charley's Aunt.

Anyone 17 and younger must be accompanied by an adult. Making it still more daring, four of the seven shows are being presented at midnight, which will empty theatergoers onto the streets in the wee hours. Finally, patrons are invited to wear costumes appropriate to the show (whatever that means), as long as they're decent.

.If you go

Rocky Horror Show

Where: Stage West Community Playhouse Main Stage, 8390 Forest Oaks Blvd., Spring Hill

When: 8 p.m. Thursday and 8 p.m. and midnight July 8, 9, 15 and 16

Tickets: $16, which includes souvenir bag. Anyone 17 or younger must be accompanied by an adult. Call (352) 683-5113. Box office is open 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays and an hour before each show.

'Rocky Horror' veterans, virgins invited to Stage West production 06/30/11 [Last modified: Thursday, June 30, 2011 4:08pm]
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