Rocky Horror dazzles
The Rocky Horror Show has been known for its risqué content — and none of that was absent from Scotch’n’Soda’s Homecoming weekend performance. With many characters in only their underclothes, a “sweet transvestite,” and sex scenes, the show truly lived up to its reputation.
Last Friday’s show opened to a packed house, and, as with many of Scotch’n’Soda’s previous shows, this one encouraged audience participation, asking audience members to call back — yell something funny — at any time during the show as long as it didn’t interrupt the actors’ lines. Callbacks are traditional to the performance of Rocky Horror, as is throwing food and other things at the stage during the performance. Scotch’n’Soda, however, requested that the audience avoid throwing food and drink and stick to throwing toilet paper instead.
The plot of Rocky Horror is weak. An innocent couple, Brad and Janet (played by first-year music major Sean Salamon and sophomore biological sciences major Diane Koeller), get caught in the middle of a forest in the dead of the night and decide to approach a nearby castle to find a telephone. This, as most stories go, is a terrible idea. The castle is inhabited by Frank-n-Furter (first-year computer science major Matthew Alsup), a transvestite from Transsexual, Transylvania, and his minions, who take Brad and Janet on the ride of their lives.
The lack of a strong plot was made up for by hilarious callbacks from Scotch’n’Soda cast members, who lined the back and sides of McConomy Auditorium. The audience was encouraged to join in with their own callbacks, with suggestions to shout “asshole” and “slut” whenever Brad and Janet were referred to by their full names. Although at times the callbacks were hard to understand because the voices were not in unison, they still added a dynamic angle to the show. Some hilarious instances of callbacks were when questions were shouted in the pauses between the actors’ lines. This made it seem like the actors were answering the questions when they spoke next. (“Who farted?” “I did.” “Describe Justin Bieber!” “A weakling.”)
Audience members also added their own interjections that improved the experience, such as “That’s my roommate!” referring to the actress playing Janet while Janet and Frank-n-Furter acted out a sex scene.
The audience also jointly participated in many instances. When the show’s famous “Time Warp” number was played, all the audience members got to their feet and started jumping to the left, stepping to the right, and doing pelvic thrusts. And when Brad sang the slow number “Once in a While,” audience members waved their lit-up cell phones in the air — at which a Scotch’n’Soda member yelled, “You were all supposed to switch off your cell phones!” at the end and caused everyone to crack up.
The show boasted some good performances, especially Alsup, who did a terrific job as a transvestite. The music was good, but the voices, unfortunately, didn’t live up to the usual Scotch’n’Soda performances.
All in all, the performance of Rocky Horror was enjoyable for newcomers and veterans alike.