The Rocky Horror Show

The Rocky Horror Show
The Rocky Horror Show
Rocky Horror.jpg
Original Cast Recording
Music Richard O'Brien
Lyrics Richard O'Brien
Book Richard O'Brien
Productions 1973-80 West End
1974 Los Angeles
1974 Sydney
1975 Film
1975 Broadway
1975 Buenos Aires
1979 UK Tour
1984-88 UK Tour
1990-91 West End
1991-92 UK Tour
1994 UK Tour
1994 Buenos Aires
1995-96 UK Tour
1996-2005 European Tour
1998-2000 UK Tour
2000-02 Broadway revival
2002-03 UK Tour
2006-7 UK Tour
2008-09 Australian Tour
2008-09 European Tour
2009 Mexico City
2009-10 UK Tour
2010-11 Asian & Australasian Tour
Awards 1973 Evening Standard Drama Award, Best Musical
1973 Plays and Players Award, Best New Musical

The Rocky Horror Show is a long-running British horror comedy stage musical, which opened in London on 19 June 1973. It was written by English-born New Zealander Richard O'Brien, and developed by O'Brien in collaboration with Australian theater director Jim Sharman. It came eighth in a BBC Radio 2 listener poll of the "Nation's Number One Essential Musicals".[1] The show tells the story of a newly engaged couple getting caught in a storm and coming to a mysterious castle owned by a mad transvestite scientist that is unveiling his new creation. The play is a parody of B-horror and sci-fi movies (in particular, the Frankenstein story) and explores themes of infidelity, transvestitism, homosexuality and loss of innocence.

The play was adapted as the 1975 film The Rocky Horror Picture Show, a cult film and the longest-running theatrical release in film history.



Jim Sharman's success with the original Australian production of Jesus Christ Superstar led to an invitation to direct the first London stage production, and it was during the London run of Superstar that he met Richard O'Brien, who had played Herod for just one performance. O'Brien wished to play Herod as Elvis, but quit Superstar when the producers asked him to tap-dance. While unemployed, O'Brien worked on a new rock musical with a rough-draft title of "Rock Horroar."

While working together at the Royal Court's Theatre Upstairs on a production of Sam Shepard's The Unseen Hand, O'Brien played Sharman some of the songs he had written and they began to flesh out the concept for the show. Sharman brought in fellow Australians Nell Campbell, a.k.a. 'Little Nell,' and long-time production designer Brian Thomson, who had designed his productions of Hair and Superstar. Costume designer Sue Blane and musical director Richard Hartley rounded out the original creative team.

The musical went into rehearsals with the working title "They Came from Denton High," which was changed just before previews at Sharman's suggestion to The Rocky Horror Show.[2]

After two previews, The Rocky Horror Show premiered at the 63-seat Theatre Upstairs on 19 June 1973 and ran until 20 July 1973. It had a running time of only 70 minutes as it did not include the songs “Charles Atlas Song’ (and its reprise) and “Eddie's Teddy” and played twice-nightly at 9 and 11pm. These ‘missing’ songs were added upon the transfer to the Classic Cinema where the schedule became a more regular eight performances per weekly (i.e., two shows on Friday and Saturday). The show continued to be performed without an interval.

The Theatre Upstairs was run by the Royal Court as a project space for new work. Veteran stage producer Michael White produced the play and Pete Moss later became musical director. The production was a critical and commercial success. Record producer Jonathan King saw it on the second night and signed the cast to make the Original Soundtrack Album over a long weekend that was rushed out on his U.K. Records label. King was involved heavily in the initial promotion for the show as well as being the other backer of it financially with White. In 1974, at the urging of then girlfriend Britt Ekland, producer Lou Adler along with Associate Producer John Beug brought it to the U.S., first in Los Angeles at the Roxy club on Sunset Strip, then at the Belasco Theater in New York where critics panned it. It closed there after 45 performances.

Back in the U.K., the production transferred to the Classic Cinema on Kings Road, London, from 14 August 1973 to 20 October 1973, a run-down 270-seat venue scheduled for demolition. Transferring again to the Kings Road Theatre, a 350-seat converted cinema, the production ran from 3 November 1973 to 31 March 1979 with many cast changes, until plans for the theatre's demolition prompted another move. The Rocky Horror Show transferred to the 820-seat Comedy Theatre on Panton Street in the West End, running from 6 April 1979 until 13 September 1980, closing the play's initial run of 2,960 performances. After occasional productions in the early 1980s, the play was revived for the Theatre Royal Hanley tour in 1984, and still is performed regularly in the U.K.[3]


Patricia Quinn as the Usherette from the original Theatre Upstairs production of The Rocky Horror Show
Act I

The Usherette in a derelict cinema introduces tonight's film in a song ("Science Fiction/Double Feature"), with masked Phantoms providing the backing vocals.

After attending the wedding of Ralph Hapshatt and Betty Munroe, Brad Majors confesses his love to Janet Weiss ("Dammit Janet") and the two become engaged. The Narrator appears to explain that Brad and Janet are leaving Denton to visit Dr. Everett Scott, their former science tutor, while driving into a rainstorm. During the trip, their car has a flat tire, and they are forced to walk through the rain to seek a telephone in an old castle ("Over at the Frankenstein Place").

The Narrator explains that Brad and Janet are feeling "apprehensive and uneasy," but must accept any help that they are offered. As Brad and Janet arrive, Riff Raff, the hunchbacked handyman, greets them, and his sister Magenta, the maid, appears. Riff Raff, Magenta, and Columbia (a groupie) speak briefly of an unlucky delivery boy named Eddie before performing the show's signature dance number "Time Warp"*. Brad and Janet try to leave at this point, but are stopped when Dr. Frank N. Furter, a pansexual mad scientist, arrives. He introduces himself as "a sweet transvestite from Transsexual, Transylvania" and invites Brad and Janet up to his laboratory ("Sweet Transvestite"). As he goes up, Brad and Janet are stripped to their underwear to dry off.

Brad and Janet enter the laboratory, where Frank N. Furter gives them laboratory coats to wear. Frank announces that he has discovered the secret to life itself. He unveils his creation, a blond, well-built man named Rocky Horror, who is brought to life. As his bandages are removed, Rocky worries about his predicament ("The Sword of Damocles"). Frank admires Rocky's physique by singing a tribute to muscle builders ("I Can Make You a Man"). A Coca-Cola freezer in the laboratory opens to reveal Frank's former lover, Eddie, a biker covered in surgical scars. Eddie — now rendered a zombie after having part of his brain removed by Frank — contemplates his new existence and recalls his former life ("Hot Patootie – Bless My Soul"). Frank panics, forces Eddie back into the machine, and hacks him to death. Frank tells Rocky — the recipient of the other half of Eddie's brain — that he prefers him over Eddie ("I Can Make You a Man (Reprise)"). Brad and Janet are then ushered to separate bedrooms for the night.

Act II

The Narrator foreshadows that Brad and Janet may be quite unsafe. Janet enjoys Brad's advances in her darkened bedroom before realizing that it is in fact Frank in disguise. He convinces Janet that pleasure is no crime, and after she asks him to promise not to tell Brad, they resume their lovemaking. The scene changes to Brad's darkened bedroom, where Brad makes love to Janet before discovering that, once again, it is Frank in disguise. Frank promises not to tell Janet, but as they resume, Riff Raff interrupts on the television monitor with the message that Rocky has escaped. Janet searches for Brad in the laboratory, and discovers Rocky hiding there. Checking the television monitor, Janet sees Brad in bed with Frank, and seduces Rocky ("Touch-a, Touch-a, Touch-a, Touch Me"). While searching the television monitor for Rocky, the rest of the group discovers that Janet has slept with him, and Brad becomes hurt and angry ("Once in a While"). Riff Raff then notifies Frank that there is another visitor entering the castle: Doctor Everett Scott, the paraplegic science tutor whom Brad and Janet intended to visit.

Doctor Scott is pushed into the laboratory by Columbia, and Frank accuses him and Brad of trying to investigate his castle. Doctor Scott assures him that he has come in search of Eddie, who is revealed to be his nephew ("Eddie's Teddy"). Frank displays Eddie's corpse to the group and then uses a device to electronically restrain the three visitors and a rebellious Columbia to the floor ("Planet Shmanet Janet"); the inhabitants of the castle are revealed to be space aliens led by Frank, who abandoned their original mission in order to engage in kinky sex with earthlings and work on Rocky. Magenta insists that they return to their home planet now that they have been found out; Frank refuses and, instead, declares his intentions to put on a "floor show."

Under Frank's influence, Columbia, Rocky, Brad, and Janet perform song and dance routines while clad in lingerie ("Rose Tint My World"). After, Frank entices them to lose all inhibition and give in to their basest carnal instincts, resulting in everyone’s beginning to engage in orgiastic sex ("Don't Dream It – Be It") before they are interrupted by Frank, who leads them into the concluding number of the floor show ("Wild and Untamed Thing"). The show comes to an abrupt end when Riff Raff and Magenta enter, wearing spacesuits and carrying ray guns. Riff Raff declares that he is usurping Frank's authority and taking them all back to their home planet. Frank makes a final plea for sympathy from Riff Raff, trying to make him understand his desire to spend the rest of his life having sex with earthlings ("I'm Going Home"). Riff Raff is unmoved and guns down Columbia, Frank, and Rocky before ordering Brad, Janet, and Doctor Scott to leave.

As the trio evacuates the castle, Riff Raff and Magenta express their excitement to return to their world and do the "Time Warp" again with their fellow Transylvanians ("Spaceship"). Brad and Janet watch as the castle blasts off into outer space, confused about the implications of their sexual escapades ("Super Heroes"). To conclude his tale, the Narrator says "…and crawling on the planet's face, insects called the human race, lost in time, and lost in space – and meaning." As the show ends, The Usherette returns to recount the night's events ("Science Fiction/Double Feature (Reprise)").

  • In the original London and Los Angeles productions, "Sweet Transvestite" came before "Time Warp". This was changed for the film version and was subsequently updated for the stage version.

Original song list

Theatre Upstairs at The Royal Court
Classic Cinema and King's Road Theatre (Formerly the Essoldo Cinema)
Comedy Theatre
Act I
Act II
  • “Touch-a, Touch-a, Touch-a, Touch Me”
  • “Once in a While”
  • “Eddie's Teddy”
  • “Planet Schmanet Janet”
  • Rose Tint My World
  • “Don't Dream It, Be It”
  • “Wild and Untamed Thing”
  • “I'm Going Home”
  • “Superheroes”
  • “Science Fiction/Double Feature (Reprise)”
Comedy Theatre transfer

For the transfer to the Comedy Theatre, the London production underwent extensive changes as it, for the first time, was being performed in a 'traditional' theatre with a proscenium stage. The three previous venues had been single-level spaces in which the action sometimes had taken place in the audience. Frank, for example, had made his entrance behind the audience and made use of a ramp through the seats to the stage. At the Comedy Theatre, the action had to be moved to the stage, for the sake of audience members on the upper levels (Dress and Upper Circles). The new production design more closely resembled the film version. This was also the first time that the London production was performed with an interval.

Original London cast


Australian productions

Australia was the first country to mount a production of The Rocky Horror Show after Great Britain and the United States. With numerous successive revivals and long-running national tours, the show seemed to run almost continuously in Australia from 1974 to 1998[original research?].


The original Australian production of The Rocky Horror Show premiered in Sydney on 15 April 1974 at the New Arts Cinema, Glebe. The production included staff and cast members who had worked on both Hair and Jesus Christ Superstar, including Reg Livermore as Frank N. Furter, director Jim Sharman, designer Brian Thomson and producer-promoter Harry M. Miller. Kate Fitzpatrick starred as Usherette/Magenta, David Cameron as Eddie, and Graham Matters as Rocky. John Paramor and Jane Harders starred as Brad and Janet.

After eighteen months in Sydney, the show moved to Melbourne, where it opened at the Regent Palace Theatre (in the suburb of Fitzroy) in October 1975. Sal Sharah, who played Riff Raff, and Graham Matters were the only members of the original Sydney cast to reprise their roles in Melbourne. The Melbourne production, directed by Jim Sharman featured Max Phipps as Frank N. Furter, Gregory Apps as Brad, Paula Maxwell as Janet, Tommy Dysart as the Narrator and Robyn Moase as Magenta. It ran for another eighteen months, finally closing in May 1977. During that time, there were a number of cast replacements, including Stephen Clarke as Brad, Diana Greentree as Janet and Joan Brockenshire (Mrs Tommy Dysart) as Magenta.

The show then transferred to Adelaide in South Australia, where it opened on 12 August 1977, directed by Roland Roccecelli. Dysart, Brockenshire and Greentree reprised their roles from the Melbourne production, with Tony Preece as Brad, Keith Reid as Riff-Raff and Shane Bourne as Rocky. Frank N. Furter was to be played by Darrell Hilton, who was replaced three days before opening night by Max Phipps and then, several weeks later, by Jon Finlayson. The Adelaide production was not as successful as the two previous ones, and closed after only two months.

Australia's first regional production was mounted less than a year later by the Riverina Trucking Company, a theatre company based in Wagga Wagga in New South Wales. Opened on 5 August 1978, this production ran for a limited season of three weeks. Terry O’Connell, who also played the role Frank N. Furter, directed it. In July 1981, the same company mounted a second production of the show, with O'Connell in the lead role and few other members of the earlier cast.


Towards the end of 1981, following the publicity surrounding the film Shock Treatment, a new Australian production of The Rocky Horror Show was planned, with the involvement of the show's original designer, Brian Thomson. Produced by Wilton Morely and directed by the Japanese-Canadian choreographer/director David Toguri, the revival opened in Sydney on 6 October 1981. Frank N. Furter was played by Englishman Daniel Abineri who previously had played the role in the first British tour in 1979 and for a year in the West End in 1980. The rest of the cast was filled by local film and television actors including Antoinette Byron as Janet, Luz Yeomans as Magenta, Jay Hackett as Rocky, Steve J. Spears as Eddie/Doctor Scott and Stuart Wagstaff as the Narrator. The production (which spawned a 'miniature' cast LP of four songs) transferred to Melbourne in January 1982 with most of the same cast. New additions included punk-cabaret artist Ignatius Jones as Eddie/Doctor Scott, and former London cast member Perry Bedden reprising his role as Riff Raff. For three weeks in February, Stuart Wagstaff was replaced by "special guest narrator", Ian "Molly" Meldrum. During the Adelaide leg of the tour, the Narrator was played by Noel Ferrier.

Wilton Morley revived the show in 1984 to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the original Australian production, and cast the show's original Frank N. Furter, Reg Livermore (then forty-five years old) in the same role. The former Frank Daniel Abineri, with Stuart Wagstaff again as the narrator, directed this production. The remaining cast included Wayne Pygram, who had played Rocky in the Riverina Trucking Company production back in 1978, and American actress Natalie Moscoe as Magenta.

In 1985, the revival opened in Adelaide, where the original show had flopped back in 1977. The cast included Graham Matters (who had played Rocky in the original 1974 Australian production), Maria Mercedes, Glen Shorrock and popular television stars Victoria Nicholls and Ken James.

Morley's production was re-launched yet again in 1986, with Daniel Abineri both as director and in the lead role of Frank N. Furter. This time the tour commenced in New Zealand, where its cast included local actors Andrew Binns as Brad, Ann Wilson as Janet, Andrea Cunningham as Magenta/The Usherette (Rocky Horror)|Usherette, Rachel King as Columbia and Russell Crowe as Eddie/Doctor Scott. For a brief stint, former New Zealand Prime Minister Robert Muldoon appeared as the Narrator. The production then toured Australia for several years, during which time the narrator variously was played by Gordon Chater, Stuart Wagstaff and others. The production ended with a second New Zealand tour, which was directed by Terry O'Connell (late of the Riverina Trucking Company productions) with Simon Westaway (who had played previously Brad in the Australian tour) as Frank N. Furter. The rest of the cast mainly comprised New Zealand talent, including actor/director John Banas and comedian Billy T. James alternating as the Narrator.


In 1992, a new production was launched by producer Paul Dainty (in conjunction with a local radio station) under the title The New Rocky Horror Show. Directed and designed by Nigel Triffit, this production premiered in Melbourne on 2 July 1992. The cast consisted of local television actors and comedians, headed by Craig McLachlan as Frank N. Furter, with Gina Riley as Janet, Peter Rowsthorn as Riff-Raff, Wilbur Wilde as Eddie/Dr Scott, and Red Symons as the Narrator. The original Brad, comedian Stephen Kearney (formerly of stand-up duo Los Trios Ringbarkus), was later replaced by Glenn Butcher. A cast album was recorded, which included, as a bonus track, a special version of "The Time Warp" performed by the entire cast. This album was produced and arranged by former Sherbet band member Garth Porter, who had been involved with Craig McLachlan's recent solo recording career.

With a million-dollar stage set and a cast full of celebrities, this, like previous productions, continued on tour for several years. Craig McLachlan was replaced in the role of Frank N. Furter by soap actor Marcus Graham. During 1996 and 1997, the production toured Adelaide and Hong Kong, with a cast that included former Boom Crash Opera lead singer Dale Ryder as Frank N. Furter and comedian George Kapiniaris as Riff-Raff.

In 1998, Paul Dainty launched another production of The New Rocky Horror Show to mark to twenty-fifth anniversary of the original London production. This opened at the Star City Casino in Sydney on 29 July 1998. Several members of the 1992 cast reprised their roles, including Glenn Butcher as Brad, Peter Rowsthorn as Riff Raff, Wilbur Wilde as Eddie/Doctor Scott, and Red Symons as the Narrator. Frank N. Furter was played by comedian Tim Ferguson, with Tottie Goldsmith as Janet and ex-Gladiator Ron Reeve as Rocky. During the run, MOR crooner Kamahl appeared as a guest narrator, and New Zealand-born actor Jay Laga'aia as a guest Eddie/Doctor Scott.


In November 2004, a special charity performance of The Rocky Horror Show was performed at the Regent Theatre in Melbourne, with a cast made up almost entirely of members of the popular television soap Neighbours. In a world first, the role of Frank N. Furter was performed by a woman – in this case, Maria Mercedes, who was then playing Lucia Cammeniti in Neighbours. A musical theatre veteran, Mercedes previously has appeared in the Adelaide production of The Rocky Horror Show back in 1985.

'A brand spanking new production' of "Richard O'Brien's Rocky Horror Show" premiered at Sydney's Star City Casino in the brand-new Star Theatre on 12 February 2008. Ironically, the show opened a week after the long-running audience participation screenings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show was closed down by Sydney's George Street Cinemas due to poor audience numbers. The cast of the stage production includes iOTA as Frank N. Furter, Paul Capsis as Riff Raff, Tamsin Carroll as Magenta/The Usherette, Sharon Millerchip as Columbia, Michael Cormick as Eddie/Doctor Scott, Simon Farrow as Rocky, Andrew Bevis as Brad, Kellie Rhode as Janet and John Waters as the Narrator.

The production moved on to Melbourne's Comedy Theatre, where it opened on 18 September 2008. The role of the Narrator was played by Derryn Hinch, although Gretel Killeen subsequently appeared as a 'guest narrator' for ten days in November. On 20 November, a special performance was held that included popular radio personalities Jo Stanley and Matt Tilley (of The Matt and Jo Show), Hamish Blake and Andy Lee (a.k.a. comedy duo Hamish & Andy), Adam Richard and Troy Ellis. A national tour of this production, taking in Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth, was promoted, but did not eventuate.

New Zealand

In 2010, it was announced that The Rocky Horror Show would be touring New Zealand, with Richard O'Brien as the Narrator.[6] The show will be in the capital, Wellington, for seven shows in December.[7]

It was also during this time that Richard O'Brien was honored with a New Zealand Citizenship[citation needed].


The Rocky Horror Show premiered in Singapore at the Esplanade Theatre in Singapore, from 5 to 16 January 2011.[8]

UK tours

The Rocky Horror Show has toured the UK regularly since the 1990-91 West End revival at the Piccadilly Theatre in productions produced by Richard O’Brien's and Howard Panter's Rocky Horror Company. Notable celebrities have been cast including Tim McInnerny, Anthony Head, Robin Cousins, Jason Donovan and Jonathan Wilkes as Frank N. Furter and TV's Craig Ferguson as Brad Majors.

The 2006-2007 UK tour

The Rocky Horror Show (now under the title Richard O'Brien's Rocky Horror Show) completed its 2006-2007 tour on 14 July 2007 in Woking, England after touring for almost eighteen months. Famous narrators of the tour included Michael Aspel, Nigel Planer, Clive Mantle, Russ Abbot, Steve Pemberton, John McArdle, Roger Lloyd-Pack, Ian Lavender, Shaun Williamson, Andy Gray, Jack Ellis, Brian Capron, Russell Grant and Christopher Biggins, who previously had been a 'Transylvanian' in The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

The 2006-2007 tour was directed by Christopher Luscombe and featured David Bedella as Frank N. Furter, Suzanne Shaw as Janet, Matthew Cole as Brad, Iain Davey as Riff Raff, Shona White as The Usherette/Magenta, Kay Murphy as Columbia, Julian Essex-Spurrier as Rocky and Nathan Amzi as Eddie/Doctor Scott with Sarah Boulton, Stuart Ellis, Lynden O'Neill and Claire Parrish as the Phantoms. After a Christmas season at the Comedy Theatre, London, the tour continued with several cast changes including Richard Meek as Brad, Sarah Boulton and later Hayley Tamaddon as Janet, Matt Harrop as Riff Raff, Claire Parrish as The Usherette/Magenta, Sarah French-Ellis and later Sarah Boulton as Columbia and Sergio Priftis as Rocky with Lauren Appleby, Erin Carter and Kevin Littlejohn as the Phantoms and Katie Funk and Andy Rees as the swings. Bedella, Amzi and Ellis retained their original roles.

The 2006 tour cast, accompanied by Roger Lloyd-Pack as the Narrator and author Richard O'Brien, performed "The Time Warp" live in Trafalgar Square on 22 July 2006 as part of The Big Dance event and was broadcast on BBC1's Dancing in the Street. In 2008 David Bedella released his first album The Dean St. Sessions, produced by Nathan Amzi, which included a duet with Richard O’Brien singing I'm Going Home as a bonus video.

The 2009-2010 UK tour

In March 2009, it was announced that the show would return with a new UK tour starting in the autumn. With Christopher Luscombe returning as the director, the tour was a revival of the 2006-2007 production with some adjustments to the direction, lighting, choreography, costumes and musical arrangements. One of the main changes was to "The Time Warp", which had featured new choreography in the 2006-2007 production, a complex dance featuring sharp and angular movements with an interpretation of clock hands on the word 'again'. In the current tour the choreography has reverted to the more familiar traditional dance moves for the chorus due to audience members feeling alienated by the new choreography in 2006. The tour opened on 17 September 2009 at the New Wimbledon Theatre and closed on 4 December 2010 at the newly opened Aylesbury Waterside Theatre. Steve Pemberton performed as the Narrator for both the opening week and closing night of the tour.

The first leg of the tour ran from September 2009 to July 2010 with a short break over the Christmas period. David Bedella reprised his role as Frank N. Furter with Nathan Amzi and Stuart Ellis also reprising their roles as Eddie/Doctor Scott and Phantom, respectively. The tour also starred Mark Evans as Brad, Haley Flaherty as Janet, Brian McCann as Riff Raff, Kara Lane as The Usherette/Magenta, Ceris Hine as Columbia and Dominic Tribuzio as Rocky. Charlotte Scott, Daniela Valvano and Marc Leslie starred alongside Ellis as the Phantoms with Henry Davis as the swing and dance captain. Evans left the tour in November 2009 but returned for the first four weeks of 2010, Phantom and understudy Marc Leslie played the role in the interim before Richard Meek reprised his role as Brad in February. Katie Funk, swing in the 2007 tour, also reprised her role whilst Davis performed as a Phantom during Leslie’s stint as Brad. The first leg of the tour ended on 10 July 2010 at the Bristol Hippodrome and saw the departure of several members of the cast whilst swing Henry Davis had left the tour two weeks earlier with Stuart King taking his place.

The second leg of the tour began on 1 September 2010 at the New Victoria Theatre, Woking with several changes to the cast. Stuart Ellis took the role of Riff Raff, a part he had played on several occasions as understudy since 2006, whilst Tom Partridge took Ellis’ place as a Phantom. Julian Essex-Spurrier reprised his role as Rocky and Adrian Der Gregorian starred as Eddie/Dr Scott. The tour continued the trend of celebrity guest Narrators including Steve Pemberton, Christopher Biggins, Ainsley Harriott, Gethin Jones, Brian Capron, Tim Brooke-Taylor, Mark Curry, Nigel Planer, Maxwell Caulfield, Simon Shepherd, Michael Starke, Dave Spikey, Reece Shearsmith, Russell Grant, Gerard Kelly and Andy Gray.

In October 2010 Ceris Hine released her first album Rose Tinted Girl which includes a bonus track titled "It Was Great When It All Began (Rocky Horror Medley)", a medley of Columbia's solos from "The Time Warp", "Eddie's Teddy" and "Rose Tint My World". At first available exclusively on the UK tour, the album was released officially in December 2010.

During the UK tour's summer break director Christopher Luscombe and the show's creative team recreated the UK production in Seoul, South Korea with a new cast of American, Australian and New Zealander actors and local celebrities as the Narrator. The production played from August until October 2010 before a five week New Zealand tour in November and December with Richard O’Brien making a rare appearance as the Narrator. Following the end of the UK tour, actors Richard Meek and Haley Flaherty flew out to New Zealand to join the production as Brad and Janet in its final week. When the production returns in January 2011 in Singapore Kara Lane and Daniela Valvano, Magenta and Phantom in the UK tour, will join the cast.

Despite accusations by some local press reviewers the UK tours produced by the Rocky Horror Company do not use plants in the audience to encourage audience participation.

U.S. productions

Roxy Cast Recording

Los Angeles production

After two previews, The Rocky Horror Show premiered in the USA at The Roxy Theatre, Los Angeles, opening at the five-hundred-seat theatre on 21 March 1974. Director Jim Sharman and many other backstage members came over from London, although Tim Curry was the only member of the cast to reprise his role. Meat Loaf joined the cast here as Eddie/Doctor Scott, Kim Milford as Rocky, Boni Enten as Columbia, and Jamie Donnelly starred as Magenta/Usherette (The Usherette was first called "Trixie" at the Roxy). Bill Miller and Abigale Haness rounded out the cast as Brad and Janet. Graham Jarvis played The Narrator. A recording of this cast is available. Tim Curry and Meat Loaf left the cast in September 1974 to begin recording the soundtrack sessions for the film, replaced respectively by Paul Jabara and Alan Martin. The Rocky Horror Show closed at the Roxy Theatre on 5 January 1975 in preparation for the transfer to Broadway.

1980 North American production

The Rocky Horror Show toured North America.

The cast featured Frank Gregory as Frank N. Furter, Marcia Mitzman as Janet, Frank Piergo as Brad, Pendleton Brown as Riff Raff, Lorelle Brina as Magenta/Trixie, C. J. Critt as Columbia, Kim Milford as Rocky, Steve Lincoln as The Narrator,

Broadway production

Broadway Revival Cast Recording

The Rocky Horror Show originally played on Broadway in 1975 with the Roxy cast from Los Angeles, except for Graham Jarvis who initially was replaced by Chicago native William Newman for the first preview but then rehired, and Bruce Scott, who was injured in another play and replaced by author Richard O'Brien himself. Tim Curry and Meat Loaf rejoined the cast. After three previews, it opened on 10 March 1975 at the nine-hundred-sixty-seven-seat Belasco Theatre.[9] The critics panned the show, and it closed on 6 April 1975 after forty-five performances.

The Rocky Horror Show had a longer revival on Broadway from October 2000 to January 2002 at the Circle in the Square Theatre and featured Tom Hewitt (later Terrance Mann) as Frank N. Furter, Alice Ripley as Janet, Raúl Esparza (later Sebastian Bach) as Riff Raff, Joan Jett as Columbia/Usherette (later Ana Gasteyer), Lea DeLaria (later Jason Wooten) as Eddie/Doctor Scott, and Daphne Rubin-Vega as Magenta. From October 2001 to January 2002, several guest celebrities played the Narrator role normally performed by Dick Cavett (Kate Clinton took over for a week while Cavett was on vacation), including Gilbert Gottfried, Sally Jesse Raphael, Robin Leach, magicians Penn & Teller, New York Post columnist Cindy Adams, MTV personality Dave Holmes, and talk show host Jerry Springer. It is suggested that the revival, like other shows running at the time, closed early because of financial losses during the time after 9/11. The Revival was nominated for the following Tony Awards: Best Actor: Tom Hewitt; Best Costume Designer: David C. Woolard; Best Director: Christopher Ashley; and Best Musical Revival.


Live theater differs from the showings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show in which some items that could be harmful to the actors are not allowed. Items such as rice that could cause a "slip and fall" have been banned from many theaters. Because of this, and the desire to create additional forms of revenue, live theaters sell what are called "audience participation bags". According to author Steven Suskin in the Broadway Yearbook 2000-2001: The Circle in the Square Theatre, from November 15, 2000 to January 6, 2002 put on a performance of "Rocky Horror Show" at which they sold audience participation bags. To quote Suskin "They (the production) managed to survive the season, though, thanks to low operating costs; heavy discounting; and those $10 “participation bags” sold in the lobby, stuffed with confetti and newspaper and toilet paper and other goodies to throw at the actors on cue." [10]

During performances, the audience has been encouraged to join in with the performance. Items most commonly taken are:

  • Toast – Thrown during the dinner scene.
  • Bounty Bars – Thrown on the line with “Paradise” in it
  • Newspaper – When Janet covers her head with one in the rain.
  • Rubber Gloves – To be snapped in time with Frank N. Furter during the creation scene.
  • Kit Kats – Thrown on the line “You get a break”
  • Rice – Thrown during the wedding scene at the start
  • Party Poppers, Hat, Blower – Used during the dinner/happy birthday scene and the creation scene.
  • Water pistols – Used to help simulate the storm in which Brad and Janet are caught.
  • Flashlights – Used to light up the room during the "there's a light" verse of "Over at the Frankenstein Place."
  • Toilet Paper – Thrown upon Doctor Scott's entrance when Brad exclaims "Great Scott!"
  • Confetti – Thrown onstage at the end of the “Charles Atlas Song” Reprise.
  • Playing Cards – Thrown during the line “cards for sorrow, cards for pain.”
  • Hot Dogs - Thrown during the line "You're a hot-dog and you better not try to hurt her .....Frank Furter."

In recent years, this has been discouraged by theatres due to the safety implications of debris and water on the stage.[11][12]


Computer games

The Rocky Horror Show computer game was produced for early eight-bit computers including the Commodore 64, Commodore 128, ZX Spectrum, Enterprise 128 and Amstrad CPC by the CRL Group PLC in 1985. The game involved playing as either Brad or Janet and collecting pieces of the Medusa machine scattered around the castle, in order to free the player's partner from stone and escape the castle before it blasts off. Meanwhile, the other characters in the game could either hinder the player's progress by stealing and hiding his/her clothes and other objects, or kill the player outright.

The Rocky Interactive Horror Show Game was released in March/April 1999 for the PC by On-Line PLC. Similarly to the earlier CRL game, the player plays as Brad or Janet and must rescue his/her partner from the castle. Unlike the older computer game, its gameplay was more puzzle-oriented, and benefited from the added detail, graphics, and live video sequences that the PC could provide. [13]


The stageplay was adapted in 1975 as a film called The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Director Jim Sharman collaborated on the screenplay with Richard O'Brien, who wrote both the book and lyrics for the stage. The film introduces Tim Curry and features Susan Sarandon and Barry Bostwick along with cast members from the original Kings Road production presented at the Royal Court Theatre, London, in 1973. In its day it was a highly provocative, though comedic, portrayal of gay, transgender culture, a symbol of LGBT themes, as well as for underground sexual quirks.

Still in limited release 36 years after its premiere, it has the longest-running theatrical release in film history. It gained notoriety as a midnight movie in 1977 when audiences began participating with the film in theatres. Rocky Horror is the first film from a major Hollywood studio to be in the midnight movie market. The motion picture has a large international following and is one of the most well known and financially successful midnight movies of all time. In 2005, the film was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".

Cast recordings

  • 1973 London Cast
  • 1974 Roxy Cast
  • 1974 Australian Cast
  • 1975 Brazilian Cast
  • 1975 Film Soundtrack
  • 1976 Mexican Cast
  • 1977 Norwegian Cast
  • 1978 New Zealand Cast (starring Gary Glitter)
  • 1980 German Cast
  • 1981 Australian Cast
  • 1990 London Cast
    ("The Whole Gory Story")
  • 1991 Icelandic Cast
  • 1992 Australian Cast
  • 1994 German Cast
  • 1995 New Zealand Cast
  • 1995 Finnish Cast
  • 1995 Icelandic Cast
  • 1995 German Cast
  • 1996 Danish Cast
  • 1996-97 European Tour
  • 1997 German Cast
  • 1998 London Cast
  • 1998 South African Cast
  • 2001 Broadway Cast
  • 2001 Korean Cast
  • 2001 Peruvian Cast
  • 2002 Philippine Cast
  • 2005 Vancouver Cast
  • 2007 Panamanian Cast
  • 2009 Mexican Cast
  • 2010 Icelandic Cast
  • 2011 Poland Cast

References and footnotes



  1. ^ Nation's Number One Essential Musical from a BBC website
  2. ^ Thomson, Brian, ed. (1979) The Rocky Horror Scrapbook. New York: Star Fleet Productions, Inc. 6.
  3. ^ Harding, James. (1987) The Rocky Horror Show Book. London: Sidgwick & Jackson Ltd. 101.
  4. ^ reprised the role in the film
  5. ^ Although Belinda Sinclair is featured on the Original London Cast Recording, Julie Covington was the first to play Janet in previews but left the cast before the first night after an accident.
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^ The 14 March 1975 performance was recorded and is available at
  10. ^ Suskin, Steven "Broadway Yearbook 2000-2001 : A Relevant and Irreverent Record" Oxford University Press Cary, NC, USA PG 85 ISBN 9780195348156
  11. ^ Rocky Horrow Show theatre programmes, 2005 and 2007
  12. ^ Official Rocky Horror website (FAQs section)
  13. ^ IGN: Rocky Interactive Horror Show Review

External links

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