Last week, I discovered the perfect way to place a bedazzled red cherry on top of my spooky season: I had the opportunity to visit rehearsal for The College Players’ production of “The Rocky Horror Picture Show.” When I walked through the door, I was greeted by three cast members, dressed head-to-toe in pure fabulousness. They rocked red corsets, six-inch stilettos, and black, laced gloves. Through the hustle and bustle of cast and crew members, the show’s director Adelaide Hicks yelled, “Attitude check!,” to which everyone responded “F— you!” in unison. That call, which was used to get the actors into character for the show, embodies the nature of “Rocky Horror.”
The costumes, the plot, and the production itself roar with the message of being yourself, no matter how outrageous. Alan Quevedo, an ensemble member, framed the event as “a night to be you,” and another ensemble member, Carolina Verrini Lenzi, added, “When else are you going to see this level of scandal and raunchiness at USF?” The show certainly is risqué, but is executed in a way that spares the audience any awkwardness. Throughout the entire performance, the original “Rocky Horror Picture Show” film is screened behind the actors, and the cast both reenacts scenes and yells out calls in response to the film.
This interactive nature of the show also provides the cast a lot of freedom to cheer each other on during their performances, which they certainly take advantage of — as soon as the film began, the cast members immediately began cheering and singing throughout its opening scene. This enthusiasm continued through the performance and seemed to be the bedrock of the show. Constant positive reactions from various ensemble members in support of their peers and encouraging comments from the tech crew had me smiling throughout.
For those who are unfamiliar with the plot of “The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” Hicks described it as, “in a nutshell; sex, aliens, mad-science, and cross-dressing.” She said it is the perfect way to close your Halloween festivities. She also said not to worry if you’ve never seen “Rocky Horror” before; most of the cast was new to the show, and many of them watched it for the first time with the College Players.
“The bizarreness of it really grows on you,” Carolina Lenzi, a freshman marketing major and ensemble member in the production, said.
The bizarreness of it really grows on you.Carolina Lenzi
Even if you don’t enjoy the movie very much, you are sure to enjoy this version of the “Rocky Horror” experience. I personally was a big fan of the movie growing up, so when I sat in their rehearsal, I was excited to see all my favorite parts of the film, like the iconic opening wedding scene with Brad and Janet. Plus, all of the call-and-response commentary from the off-stage cast members brought the show to life in a whole new way. The show is unlike anything you have seen before and a chance to see your peers in an entirely new (and glamorous) light!
Whether you’re a die-hard “Rocky Horror” fan or have never seen it before, you can sing your heart out and experience an incredible night unlike any other. All audience members are encouraged to go all-out, so don’t be shy about wearing those cherry red heels at the back of your closet!
You can go see The College Players’ production of “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” on Saturday, Nov. 2 at 8 p.m. in Swig Pavillion at the USF Koret Health and Recreation Center. Audience members must be 18+ and have a USF ID. Doors open at 7 p.m., admittance is free, and seating is first-come, first-served.