Arts and Entertainment

‘Rocky Horror Picture Show’ shakes up Whidbey Playhouse for one night only

The Whidbey Playhouse is about to get hit hard. Literally. For at what other theater show can the audience throw things, shout and dress up like never before than the “Rocky Horror Picture Show?”

For the first time in Playhouse history, the “Rocky Horror Picture Show” is coming to Oak Harbor. The cult movie sensation is showing one night only at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 12. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. with dancing, games and a costume contest.

Tickets are $10 and sell out fast. Purchase tickets from the Playhouse by calling 679-2237.

The 1975 film will be shown behind a cast of actors performing on-stage, which is called shadow casting. Bob Foster and Delaina Bricker are two Oak Harbor actors who will be performing, along with Tacoma’s Blue Mouseketeers, Vancouver’s Geeks After Dark and Seattle’s Vicarious Theater Company. Regular Playhouse volunteers will be assisting with the production of the show, including Derek Remington on lights/sound.

Foster, who directs the Blue Mouseketeers, has been a regular on the Playhouse stage for the past year, starring in the plays “The Philadelphia Story,” “Annie,” “A Child’s Christmas in Wales,” “Busy Body” and “The Curious Savage.” Foster is also a member of the Whidbey Improv Team. During the day, he works at Fleet Readiness Center Northwest on Whidbey Island Naval Air Station.

“The audience can expect a night out at the Whidbey Playhouse like no other they have had there before,” Foster said. He has been involved with the “Rocky Horror Picture Show” shadow casting community for 10 years and has performed approximately 300 times.

And don’t forget to dress up --- “the wilder, the better!” Foster said. “Think Halloween in May!”

Foster first saw “Rocky Horror” as a teenager and attended it for the first time at Halloween in 2001 in Charleston, S.C. As a cast began forming, they needed someone to play the part of Brad so Foster joined.

“And I never looked back,” Foster said. The next year, he joined with a cast in Greenville, S.C., and saw how much the community enjoyed it.

Don’t come to the show expecting to sit back in your seat for a quiet evening. It’s a zany, interactive experience ---- complete with throwing things, loud audience participation and interaction with the actors.

“Rocky Horror” is famous for its participation element, Foster said. There’s singing, dancing and audience members may even become props for the actors. “Call-backs” are a famous element as audience members yell at the screen and the film reacts with lines or action, Foster said, adding that he thinks that’s the most exciting part for the audience.

“While there are a great many standards, some of which have been said since 1976, each theater has its own set of locally based or locally created lines. New lines are created all the time, often from current news or pop culture. I love to hear ones I haven’t heard before, to see other casts and hear what they have to say,” Foster said.

The plot of the show centers on a newly engaged couple, Brad and Janet, who get a flat tire in the rain --- a natural opener for the chills and thrills to follow. Looking for help, they stumble upon Dr. Frank N. Furter’s castle just as he’s throwing a party to celebrate his creation, Rocky Horror, the muscle-bound opposite to Frankenstein’s monster, Foster said.

After Brad and Janet get over their shock, they succumb to their surroundings ---- and the audience will, too.

“Filled with catchy, energetic songs, ‘Rocky Horror’ is a great send-up of cheesy horror and science-fiction films and is now considered to be the best of the B-movies it satires,” Foster said.

“My favorite aspect of it, from a personal side, is the many great, close and lasting friendships I’ve made due to ‘Rocky Horror.’ I’ve met people from all over the world, from all walks of life. The ‘Rocky Horror’ community is very open and friendly. One of the themes of the film is be who you are, even if you’re wacky and weird,” Foster said. He described “Rocky Horror” as a community; in most major cities, there are groups of people who perform on a regular basis. Casts even gather for conventions and meet other casts from around the world.

“This show is the audience’s chance to let loose with a different, original amazing time in the theater,” Foster said.

Prop bags, complete with everything you need to throw or use during the show, are available for $3 at the door.

Due to mature themes, viewer discretion is advised.

The Playhouse is located at 730 SE Midway Blvd., Oak Harbor. For more information, contact 679-2237 or office@whidbeyplayhouse.com.

For information about shows by Tacoma’s Blue Mouseketeers, visit www.TacomaRockyHorror.net; for Seattle’s Vicarious Theater Company performances, visit www.thezenroom.com.

 

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