The Rocky Horror Show Comes to Visalia

The Rocky Horror Show aficionados are in for a great treat at the Ice House Theatre in Visalia beginning Friday, October 16. Rocky Horror opened to great acclaim more than 40 years ago in London and still enjoys fan following around the world.

Co-director Elicia Russel exclaims excitedly, “I started seeing Rocky Horror when I was in high school in the 1970’s. It was exciting to be interactive at the movies. People came dressed in costume and stood in front of the screen reenacting the songs and dances.”

Despite the popular movie version, Rocky Horror was originally a stage musical, a spoof of the B-rated horror movies that were the rage from the 1940’s to the 1970’s.

“It includes rock ‘n roll from the era. You can hear that music throughout the show,” comments co-director Henry Ralston. “I was part of the next generation of Rocky Horror fans.”

The cult following of Rocky Horror seems to know no bounds. Cast members, as young as 16, are wild fans of the show and very excited to be part of the current presentation.

In step with tradition, the Visalia Players’ production will be interactive with audience participation. To encourage patrons to join in the fun (as if that might be necessary), prop bags will be available for purchase.

The cast of 20 includes Ice House veterans as well as newcomers.

Dr. Frank-N-Furter, the zany transvestite owner of the castle, is aptly portrayed by Sean Hopper, who was seen at the Ice House in The Spelling Bee and Little Shop of Horrors. Sean likes portraying characters “that make me do things I’ve never done before. Dr. Frank-N-Furter is no exception.”

Janet Pursell is making her Ice House debut as the naïve Janet, who “learns she can be herself and embrace her sexuality. It is a great evolution.”

Her equally naïve fiancée Brad is played by Corey Ralston, who has appeared in and directed numerous Visalia Players’ productions. Ralston has been obsessed by Rocky Horror since high school.

“I always wanted to play Brad and never thought it would happen. Now it has, and it is so exciting.”

The show takes its name from the blonde, buff male created by Dr. Frank-N-Furter – Rocky Horror. Bailey Beach is very excited to be Rocky. “In the movie Rocky doesn’t talk, but in the play he expresses himself. Initially, it was alarming to learn that I was going to be this sexual person, but it’s okay now.” Bailey last appeared at the Ice House in The Laramie Project.

The Rocky Horror Show runs for three weekends at the Ice House Theater at Race and Santa Fe in Visalia.

Evening performances are at 7:30pm on October 16, 17, 23, 24, and 30 and matinees are at 2pm on October 18, 25, and November 1.

A special show is scheduled for October 31 at midnight.

The show contains adult content, language, and partial nudity.

To purchase tickets go to the Visalia Players’ website at www.visaliaplayers.org, their Facebook page, Visalia Community Players or call (559) 734-3900.

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