Theater Review: The upbeat and anarchic Rocky Horror Show has fans roaming the time warp once again
Richard O’Brien’s Rocky Horror Show comes to Dublin for another great show. First performed at the Royal Court Theater in London in 1973, this extravaganza of hedonism was a major counterculture event in its day. In conservative Ireland we licked it; The film version was played every Friday night at Harold’s Cross for over two decades from the 1970s through the late 1990s. Some of that crowd, in glittery hats and now with walking sticks, were in the Bord Gáis Energy Theater auditorium on Monday. But there was also a new generation of young Goths; a very diverse audience.
he story is: super-hetero engaged couple Brad (Richard Meek) and Janet (Haley Flaherty) have a flat tire on a lonely road, wandering in the rain until they find a lock where they ask to use the phone allowed to. The owner of the castle, the scientist Dr. Frank-N-Furter (Stephen Webb), creates a perfect example of a man, Rocky (a muscular Ben Westhead), by slaughtering delivery boys. Frank wears provocative women’s clothing and is constantly distracted by lusty bisexual endeavors. He takes turns seducing both Janet and Brad in a hilarious bed swapping scene.
The story also has an alien invasion element. It’s a mix of many B-movie horror tropes: vampires, aliens, and preppy innocents. Songs are unforgettable, including the big number Timeskipand the choreography is joyous and essentially anarchic.
The audience, many in elaborate costumes, throws in plenty of comments. This is expertly handled with a stock of subtle disparagements from Jackie Clune as narrator, with plenty of local Dublin references. There’s potential for chaos with audience participation, but it remains fun and controlled. No matter how loud the hecklers are, they can’t keep up with the over-boosted sound from the stage.
The show presents no real agenda, teaches no moral lessons; in the early stages it looks like an act out of the struggle between liberalism and conservatism, but it doesn’t really mind that kind of sociological positioning. It’s like candy, frothy and full of fun. It doesn’t say anything, it just is. And that’s the political subtlety at the heart of all the over-the-top boasting. Sometimes you don’t want to preach, you just want to be.
https://www.independent.ie/entertainment/theatre-arts/theatre-review-joyful-and-anarchic-rocky-horror-show-has-fans-lapping-up-the-time-warp-again-42321594.html Theater Review: The upbeat and anarchic Rocky Horror Show has fans roaming the time warp once again