The Rocky Horror Show Book, Music and Lyrics by Richard O'Brien
Performance Dates & Tickets
July 22 - August 20, 2011
Friday & Saturday nights at 8 PM
Midnight Show on Saturday, August 6th
$18 regular, $14 students and seniors
THIS IS NOT THE MOVIE. Further notes below.
Not recommended for young audiences. See below.
Call 440-247-8955 (Mon-Sat, 1-6 PM)
About the Play
See the original musical that spawned the cult classic film! Don't dream it, be it.
Directed by Greta Rothman
Musical Direction by Keith Stiver
Choreographed by Pamela LaForce
- Adult themes and situations.
- Revealing costumes.
- Fleeting use of strong language.
- Rock music.
Before the 1975 movie, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, became a worldwide cult phenomenon, there was the original 1973 musical, The Rocky Horror Show. Opening in a 63-seat theatre in London, Richard O'Brien's bizarre musical paid homage to late night B-movies and classic 50s rock 'n' roll through the story of Brad and Janet. This pair of unsuspecting small-town kids, freshly engaged to be married, blow out a tire on a rainy night and, while seeking a phone to use, stumble into the castle of a cross-dressing alien who's been building himself a muscle-bound lover in his lab. The ludicrous plot, a sexy twist on the classic 'Frankenstein' storyline, is ultimately a framework for O'Brien's catchy rock tunes, and gained an outsider fanbase with its moral of being yourself and pursuing your dreams, even if the world gives you funny looks.
While CVLT's production of the show uses the original script and includes all the songs that the movie's followers have come to love, like "Sweet Transvestite", "Science Fiction Double-Feature" and of course "The Time Warp", it strides in the footsteps of the recent Broadway revival with an amped-up rock band and a sassy modern vibe. The Rocky Horror Show is definitely going to rock the Village of Chagrin Falls!
- Don Bernardo as “The Criminologist”
- Steven R. Tiderman as “Dr. Frank-N-Furter”
- Damian Henri as “Brad Majors ”
- Arianna Taxman as “Janet Weiss”
- Brandon Hood as “Riff Raff”
- Leah Frires as “Magenta”
- Michelle Unger as “Columbia”
- Chad Duwe as “Eddie ”
- Ralph Diludovico as “Rocky Horror”
- Eric L. Sofer as “Dr. Evrett V. Scott ”
- Patricia Welsh and Jen Ryan as “The Usherettes”
- Kelly Aker, Brie Arko, Nik Fedyszyn, Samantha Gebler, Alex Marzullo, M.J. Mihalic, Laura Rightnour-Henri, Andrew Kondik, Jen Ryan, Patricia Welsh and Scott Zolkowski as “The Phantoms”
WITH: Dan Kamionkowski (Piano), Dennis Yurich (Guitar), Joel K. Negus (Bass), David Keith Stiver (Synth), Cathrine Stadulis (Sax), Drew Rothman (Drums)
CVLT boldly jumps to the left with 'Rocky Horror'(CLICK TO READ FULL REVIEW)
REVIEW BY BOB ABELMAN - 7/29/11 issue of the NEWS-HERALD
(Bob Abelman - News-Herald, Chagrin Valley Times, Solon Times, The Morning Journal, Geauga Times Courier Member, American Theatre Critics Association)
Each time the Chagrin Valley Little Theatre strays from things safe and Seussical, it is a small step in the right direction.
Venturing into the realm of Richard O'Brien's The Rocky Horror Show-a science-fiction rock-n-roll sex comedy-is a giant leap. Well, more like a jump to the left and then a step to the right.
Rocky Horror started out as a campy parody of the sci-fi and horror B-movies of the 1940s and 1950s. It premiered in London in 1973 to so much fanfare that it was turned into a film in 1975, which failed miserably as did the subsequent New York stage production. Picked up as a kitschy midnight flick at an artsy Greenwich Village movie house, the film developed a cult following and a penchant for rowdy and racy audience participation, which spread to theaters across the country.
The renewed popularity of the film resulted in renewed interest in the play that is currently on stage at the CVLT.
Rocky Horror traces the one-night misadventure of straight-laced Brad and Janet, who seek assistance at an eerie old castle after their car breaks down. There they are introduced to Transylvanian transvestite Frank-N-Furter and his erotically clad clan of servants and ghoulish devotees. As it happens, the couple arrives on a special evening, for Frank-N-Furter will be giving life to his latest creation-a muscle-bound mate named Rocky.
Clearly the story is not this play's strongest suit. The dialogue is no great shakes either. In fact, it is the inanity of the dialogue that resulted in the counterpoint shout-outs, audience reenactments and other assorted forms of patron participation in the first place.
The true allure of Rocky Horror is its actual performance. If performed with absolute abandon - that is, if the actors embrace all that is campy and over-the-top in this parody, and the audience wholeheartedly accepts what it is given - that the B-movie storyline and the mindless dialogue take a backseat to the sheer exhilaration of the storytelling.
This is precisely what occurs during the CVLT production under Greta Rothman's very creative direction. She pushes all the fun to the forefront and has put together a fine show.
It starts with the music, which doesn't so much accompany the play's sixteen musical numbers as showcase them. A phenomenal six piece band directed by David Keith Stiver rocks the rafters.
The same hard-driving energy in the music translates to the stage performances thanks in large part to a thoroughly dedicated Greek Chorus of phantoms, played by Patricia Welsh, Jen Ryan, Kelly Aker, Brie Arko, Nikolai Fedyszyn, Samantha Gebler, Alex LaForce, M.J. Mihalic, Laura Rightnour-Henri, Andrew Kondik and Scott Zolkowski. As omnipresent Frank-N-Furter fans, these creatures of the night are completely into this production and, during the many ensemble musical numbers, perform Pam LaForce's raucous and sexy choreography without a hint of hesitancy or inhibition.
The same can be said for the featured players, who pay homage to the iconic film versions of their characters but also add their own particular flair.
The charismatic Steven Tiderman plays lingerie-clad transvestite Frank-N-Furter to the hilt, owning the audience from the moment of his dramatic entrance to his melodramatic demise.
Damian Henri and Arianna Taxman as enthusiastic do-gooders Brad and Janet are as delightfully clueless as Brandon Hood, Leah Frires and Michelle Unger are demonic in the roles of the disgruntled servants Riff Raff, Magenta and Columbia, respectively.
The diminutive Ralph Diludovico, as Rocky, is more pumped up pull-toy than beefcake poster boy but his charm and fine voice are a winning combination. Chad Duwe as bad boy biker Eddie is wonderful in his short but rocking cameo number "Hot Patootie," while Eric Sofer as Dr. Scott and Don Bernardo as the play's narrator turn in serviceable performances in roles with less wiggle-room for originality.
Edmond Wolff's set and lighting design and Andrew Rothman's video effects offer just the right amount of macabre, technical bells and whistles, and bizarre artifacts to keep things visually interesting throughout the production.
For Rocky Horror first-timers, the CVLT provides a guide to proper audience participation upon entering the theater.
During the performance, audience members are encouraged to partake in the "Time Warp" choreography. This, like the show as a whole, requires putting one's inhibitions aside, ignoring one's preconceptions of what theater ought to be, and taking a jump to the left.
'Rocky Horror' at Chagrin Valley Little Theatre bawdy, campy, fun(CLICK TO READ FULL REVIEW)
REVIEW BY MARJORIE PRESTON - 7/27/11 issue of the SUN NEWS
The current Chagrin Valley Little Theatre production of the musical The Rocky Horror Show with music, lyrics and book by Richard O’Brien, is a sexually charged romp through the campy world of Dr. Frank-N-Furter’s pleasure castle.
Soon-to-be-married upstanding citizens Brad Majors (Damian Henri) and Janet Weiss (Arianna Taxman) find themselves on a country drive on a rainy night when their car blows a tire. Brad rings the bell of a castle and the couple soon meets the cross-dressing scientist Dr. Frank-N-Furter (Steven R. Tiderman) and his many servants who live in a secluded castle.
Their bawdy lives, which Janet calls “unhealthy,” are soon very apparent to the couple, and Brad and Janet must decide whether to stay or go.
Taxman as Janet is perfectly cast. She possesses a sweet, full, clear voice. She shines brightest dancing around in her bra and slip in the toe-tapping “Touch-A, Touch Me” that opens the second act. Henri as Brad, who may remind audiences of Justin Timberlake with his good looks and nerdy black-rimmed glasses, is equally well-cast. His best moment is the number that follows Janet’s, the 50s-style ballad “Once in a While,” where his competent voice is displayed.
Tiderman as Frank-N-Furter owns the show as he pleasantly overdoes overdone in his fishnets, high heels and red bustier. Everything he says is dramatic, important and breathless, and both his ballad “I’m Going Home” and his final moments on stage are dead on.
Rocky Horror (Ralph Diludovico), the strong man created by Dr. Frank-N-Furter, is physically perfect for the part (he did eight push ups on opening night).
Narrator Don Bernardo is especially fun as he breaks the rules of what a narrator should be, drinking a martini or teaching the audience a dance.
Director Greta Rothman managed to open The Rocky Horror Show in conservative Chagrin Falls. Beyond that, she understands parody and camp and makes sure everything goes big – big dance numbers, grand entrances, sexy costumes.
Choreographer Pamela LaForce ably wrangles 21 cast members through multiple high-energy, sweaty dance numbers with nearly flawless execution, especially in the first act.
Musical Director David Keith Stiver has kept the action moving with high energy numbers and musical underlays throughout. There is never a dull moment.
Costume Designer Brian Smith has an eye for modernizing the traditional trashy Rocky Horror wardrobe to hit the right note of dramatic and debaucherous.
Set, sound and lighting are by Edmond Wolff, who has created a multi-media set with video screens, shadow projections and live action space in a grand castle. The production has used its surroundings to the fullest.
If you are ready to do the “Time Warp,” let go and have some campy fun at The Rocky Horror Show.
'Rocky Horror' offers shock value at CVLT(CLICK TO READ FULL REVIEW)
REVIEW BY HERB HAMMER - 7/28/11 issue of the CHAGRIN VALLEY TIMES
Greta Rothman has created something rare as a director. She has taken a raunchy, nearly plotless rock musical and turned it into a comic sensation.
Richard O'Brien's The Rocky Horror Show was once a shocking attack on established morality. In the 1970s, the younger population waiting for this kind of weird sex-driven show, a show that was adapted to the screen and has become a classic cult film in the midnight-movie market.
The stage version, due mostly to Miss Rothman's remarkable creativity, while no longer a shock, could easily run through the rest of the year.
Chagrin Valley Little Theatre has thrown Chagrin Falls morality to the winds and has given Miss Rothman and her creative team free reign. The results are astonishing.
There is a plot of some sort for those who choose to pay close attention, but it's clearly not worth the effort.
Brad and Janet arrive at a very strange castle. While driving in a rainstorm, they have a flat tire. They need help from somewhere. Upon entering the castle, they find more weird than one could ever imagine. The phantoms (actually the chorus) have been waiting for them. After an enormous amount of singing and dancing, the master of the house, if you choose to call him that, appears.
Arriving from high up in the set, Dr. Frank-N-Furter, a hilarious transvestite, greets our two ingénues and takes them to his laboratory. Here he brings to life a muscular fellow known as Rocky Horror.
The plot then proceeds to go haywire with sex of more kinds than you might want to know about. By the way, nobody takes their clothes off, not all of them anyway.
What makes this show memorable is the very talent of the large troupe. Choreographer Pamela LaForce has done her best work to date. She's helped by having a terrific, willing, working cast.
The dances are highly creative and often appear to be made up by the dancers as the show moves on.
Damian Henri is perfect as the naive Brad. Not to be outdone, Arianna Taxman, as Janet, is a bright innocent teen who eventually goes wild.
Leading the way is the hilarious Steven Tiderman, as Dr. Frank-N-Furter. His every moment on stage is a laugh riot. Costume designer Brian Smith helps with his often hilarious creations.
Edmond Wolff's sets are his best ever with sound and lighting to match.
Though Mr. O'Brien's songs are pedestrian at best, the singers at CVLT are able to make them all winners.
Music director David Keith Stiver and his band keep the music exciting.
Those who have seen the midnight movie version known to everyone as The Rocky Horror Picture Show will surely like the stage show. Unlike the movie, though, the stage play doesn't have as much audience participation, though it tries.
With special effects that raise the humor to more heights, The Rocky Horror Show is more stage fun than CVLT has produced for some time. It is not meant for children.