Sunderland Empire, 20/09/2021
Let’s do the time warp again! The Rocky Horror Show, everyone’s favourite cult hit musical that always seems to be on an endless tour is back around again, this time for us visiting Sunderland Empire. The sci-fi hit follows newly engaged Brad Majors (Ore Oduba) and Janet Weiss (Haley Flaherty) as they visit a castle for help after their car breaks down. From the moment the doorbell rings on the castle they (and the audience) are thrown into the wildest night of their lives, that they’ll remember for a very long time… Wether you’re a mega fan or a “virgin” (never seen the show before) you’re always in for a treat with Rocky Horror. Read on to find out our 5 reasons to see The Rocky Horror Show on it’s UK tour!
1. Philip Franks as the Narrator
After the opening scene, you are welcomed to the show by it’s narrator. A role that requires quick wit and a lot of audience control to deal with all sorts of welcomed shouting-out. Franks’ extensive career across television and radio means he’s no stranger to narration, but it’s the humour he brings to the role that really sets the bar. Encouraging heckles and shooting them back down again as soon as they are shouted, plus working in topical jokes and political satire into his script really help with feeling like you’ve not seen this act before. The audience adore Franks from the moment he enters the stage and it’s no mystery why.
2. It’s the most raucous show you’ll ever be a part of
If there’s one thing about Rocky Horror, it’s not short of audience participation! So many people come dressed up in all sorts of sequins, corsets, glitter and suspenders, you’d feel out of place not in costume. Lots of people bonding over each other’s costumes and taking photographs makes it a real occasion. Once you’re in the auditorium, all sorts of responses to the show are shouted out – most of which are pure 18+ filth that has the audience in stitches. During the show everybody joins in with getting their torches out for “There’s a Light”, doing the “Time Warp” and going ballistic for the entrance of the infamous Frank-n-Furter. Don’t worry if you haven’t seen the show before and don’t know where to join in, just follow everyone else!
3. There’s a very unique Frank-n-Furter in Stephen Webb
In previous productions, we’ve seen other actors pay excellent homage to the sensual Tim Curry in the 1975 film, while still putting their own spin on the character. This tour has Webb carrying the production with what feels like a fresh take on the character. A brash New York accent really stands out in Webb’s performance, his Frank-n-Furter hilariously thunders through scenes and his vocals give more of a ‘rock’ take on the way the songs are performed which really fits the ethos of the show. It’s worth also noting that you’re in the hands of Rocky Horror royalty in Kristian Lavercome too, who has played the role of Riff Raff in the show for over 1800 performances across the globe, he is absolutely outstanding.
4. It contains so many earworm songs!
Generally speaking, people just associate “Time Warp” with Rocky Horror and many folks couldn’t name another song. The show is packed with fantastic numbers from the witty lyrics in “Dammit Janet” to the trailblazing “Rose Tint My World” showcasing the talent of the entire cast through the varying tempos and styles of music that number gives. Almost every number is packed with energy and fun from the cast, and you’ll have so many of them in your head for days afterwards.
5. It’s as mad as it always has been
For anyone’s first experience, don’t expect to come out thinking you’ve followed that plot, especially in act 2. The way the show is completely random is absolutely hilarious, something you just have to go along with; even watching the film beforehand wouldn’t help much is understanding what is going on as the story unravels. Just get in there, take it all in and enjoy the cult classic that’s earned it’s place in musical theatre history. A usual response to the show is “I’ve no idea what was going on but I loved it” and this tour is no exception.
Find all tour dates and tickets by clicking here!