Arts, Dining & Entertainment

Pentangle promises “a damn good night out” with its production of “The Rocky Horror Show”

Courtesy of Pentangle Arts Council

The cast of Pentangle runs through a dress rehearsal of the upcoming “The Rocky Horror Show.”

Oct. 23-24, 30-31 — WOODSTOCK — It’s naughty. It’s nice. It’s “a damn good night out,” says Richard O’Brien, creator of “The Rocky Horror Show.” O’Brien wrote the story of the now famous — or infamous — transvestite from the planet Transylvania, to keep himself entertained during a long cold winter in the early 1970’s. The first stage production happened in 1973 in London, and quickly became a musical and stage hit with critical acclaim and a worldwide following. Pentangle Arts is pleased to participate in bringing this production of “The Rocky Horror Show” — a campy yet satisfying tale that transcends time, gender, age, and race — to new audiences, as well as diehard fans.

The show tells the story of strait-laced lovebirds Brad Majors and Janet Weiss, who run into car trouble and seek help at the site of light down the road. Little do they know it’s coming from the castle where Dr. Frank N. Furter is in the midst of his latest maniacal experiment, the creation of a muscular man named “Rocky Horror.” The play is a rock musical, a spoof of science fiction movies, and a raunchy story of seduction and sexual confusion.

Showtimes for the live stage production of Richard O’Brien’s “The Rocky Horror Show” are Oct. 23, 24, 30 and 31 at 7:30 p.m. at Woodstock Town Hall Theatre. For the ultimate Rocky Horror experience, Pentangle is offering a special midnight performance on Halloween night! “The Rocky Horror Show” is not intended for children as it contains strong themes, sexual content and language. Audience members are encouraged (but not required) to dress up! Prop kits will be available for purchase at the theatre on a first come-first served basis. No outside props will be allowed. For tickets and information, visit www.pentanglearts.org or call 802-457-3981.

Pentangle’s production of “The Rocky Horror Show” brings some of the Upper Valley’s finest talent to the stage, including Mike Backman (Narrator/Dr. Scott), Paul D. West (Dr. Frank N Furter), Chris Lamontagne (Riff Raff), Patrick Sharpe (Brad), Lauren Meyers (Janet), and Spencer Bladyka (Rocky). Says “Rocky Horror” Director, Lanni Luce West, “I am blessed to have a cast made up of seasoned performers and novices, all of whom are extremely excited to be part of this production. Their camaraderie and spirit is infectious. Their desire to do this show justice is what is going to make our performance extra special.”

Though the show is over-the-top, silly, and fun, the story still manages to connect with the audience on a deeper level, which explains part of “Rocky Horror’s” longevity and appeal. The cult phenomenon derives more specifically from the audiences’ ongoing interactions with the characters. The story itself maintains an effervescent energy throughout, and audience participation is highly encouraged. For those who’ve never been to a show, don’t be intimidated. Pentangle will provide well known audience call-backs; however part of the fun of “Rocky Horror” is that the lines are ever-evolving. No two shows are exactly the same. Often current events become part of the show, says “Rocky Horror” super fan, Larry Viezel, who recently heard lines about “Donald Trump and the other day there was a line about Cecil the Lion. Whatever is in the news can become an audience participation line.”

Pentangle hopes to appeal to new audiences as well as its base with this production. “The show has a cult following that cuts across age and gender, which will bring new faces into our theatre,” says Wilson. West agrees, “I think a lot of people will connect with this show. ‘The Rocky Horror Show’ and its movie counterpart have spanned over four generations, and made a lasting impact on so many. I can only hope that the nostalgia will bring in adults and the show’s reputation will bring in younger audiences as well.”

Pentangle Arts’ production of “The Rocky Horror Show” celebrates the best of community theatre, pays tribute to a pop culture phenomenon, and, hopefully, gives the audience, “a damn good night out!”

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