Rocky Horror Experience - Fantasm Style !!
This years FANTASM production of the Rocky Horror Picture Show was a display in contrasts. The ConCom (convention organizing committee) decided to run a "dueling cast" format with two independent casts performing at once on one common stage.
On the right half-stage, a cast from FANTASM's original hometown - Athens, GA, The Satanic Mechanics, represented the "traditional" Rocky Cast in "traditional" costuming and stage blocking.
On the left half-stage, N9 and all it entails. With sets, props, and "costuming" from the extreme ends of the spectrum, N9 presented the form of ANTI-Cast in all it's glory.
The Experience of Rocky Horror for N9 at FANTASM was conceived during unspeakable midnight rituals on the rooftop of an N9 house by Toel, HanniBill and a band of pixies. The chore of show director fell to the senior plotter and original N9 member - HanniBill. Known for his extravagant productions and extreme concepts, his selection to lead at FANTASM was only natural. This show was certainly up to the standards and might have been his best ever!
From airbrushing RiffRaff and Magenta with iridescent, black-light paints of eerie greenish-yellow with dark green veining (this was no simple cover or touch up painting, but rather a FULL BODY painting!!), to having a seven foot mechanical pussy with operating teeth as Rocky's "Birthing Chamber," this show had all the trimmings of his particular lunacy.
The show started normally enough. The ladies of The Satanic Mechanics were our Pre-show hosts, as they assaulted our Rocky Virgins and lulled the unsuspecting audience into the feeling it was to be a normal showing. The ladies also chose to be our Trixies for the evening and performed the traditional strip tease (with of course the FANTASM twist of actually stripping!!)
The audience was then treated to two separate sets of Brad and Janet on opposing sides of the stage, dressed normal and setting up for a normal night of Rocky (aside from there being two sets). The singular Criminologist added a simple touch to the show as we got underway. Projector difficulties began to plague the show during the rain sequence, just in time for the differences to become apparent.
When the rain started and the RiffRaffs appeared, it became apparent that his was no normal show indeed. On the right a normal tuxedoed hunchback sings from his window. While on the left, a strange green and yellow figure exploded from the crowd and lumbered towards the stage. Later to be joined by his equally green sister in time for the Time Warp.
The show moved along at this point on pure soundtrack and adrenaline as few noticed the screen was dead. Enter the Franks. Right, a slender man in black garters and boustier with fishnets. Left, a six foot seven monster of a man in a small black leather miniskirt and a fourteen inch polished steel cowl.
Upon entry to the Laboratory, we find the sheet-clad figure in the left stage corner has been lit up. It is to be the Chamber of Rocky's "birth." After a graphic "sex scene" between Frank and the animated chamber, an Easter Miracle occurs. Rocky, as played by Jesus himself, is born into the stage covered from head to toe in massive amounts of Strawberry Jelly "afterbirth". Just to have hoards of N9 women rush forward from the audience to lick him clean!
For a twist the two casts had decided to "share" and Eddie and have the Columbias "fight" over him. The ensuing battle let the fur and the nipples fly! While neither lady won her Eddie, the crowd certainly won the ladies. Eddie's death at the hands of two Franks was indeed an interesting sight as well.
As the dinner scene arrived, the casts had joined together for one large feast on the meats of the few virgins from the pre-show. This scene showed well the contrasts of the casts. Such as the normal Dr. Scott of the Satanic Mechanics in his wheelchair and the bizarre mechanical man of N9. Yet still showing the unity of Rocky Horror and its many faces.
The floor-show offered another opportunity to collaborate into one great chorusline. Only to be broken by two very different sets of Spaced Domestics. The well-known Gold and Black approaches from the right, and strange glowing green rising from the seats on the left.
The show ended in one massive explosion of bodies and physical AP, as all cast members of both crews pushed the house away together.
The Experiment of the Dueling Casts was clearly a success. The audience had been standing room only all show, with a long line waiting to get in the door should anyone foolishly get up from their seat. They were so enthralled by the antics on stage that no one really cared when the projector died. The casts had been left to their own devices with audio only. So engaging was the production, that even after the projector had been restored, it took awhile for anyone to notice the screen was working!
N9 made some new friends on this evening and renewed some older ones. Some members of The Satanic Mechanics have since even joined N9 at our regular theatre as performers in major roles. We look forward to their continued involvement with us and to the likelihood of having some join our ranks as regulars. We also look forward to joining them soon on their acquisition of a new and regular venue of their own. They certainly deserve one.
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