If you’re one of the many students who are still trying to find something to do this Halloween, then look no further. The annual Rocky Horror Halloween Ball is back, and rest assured, this is one experience you do not want to miss in your lifetime.
Newcomers to the show should beware however, since it is definitely not for the faintest of people. The minute you purchase a ticket to one of the screenings, you are committing yourself to one of the most entertaining, yet most daring Halloweens of your life.
So what exactly does a screening of The Rocky Horror Picture Show entail? The night begins in great Halloween fashion with a costume contest, followed by a warm welcome to first-timers, referred to as “virgins” by devotees and the cast. The real show begins as cast-members, dressed in lingerie, corsets and drag, take their places and the infamous red lips appear on the screen behind them, singing the opening song “Science Fiction/Double Feature”.
After that, the audience is set up for an exceptional time. “Every year, people ask me to describe the experience of going to see it. It’s amazing, it’s just so much fun and just seeing how many people come to us after the show, asking us to get involved, it kind of proves just how amazing the experience is,” says actor Phil Le Maistre, who is now in his eighth year as a cast member.
The movie, which is based on the long running stage musical The Rocky Horror Show, has gained a massive cult following since its release in 1975, and it is still being screened weekly in some parts of the world.
No showing in the world is as big or as successful as Montreal’s Halloween Ball however, and Le Maistre attributes that success to the fact that the event is held annually rather than weekly, adding to the anticipation and enthusiasm.
“It’s so exciting to think back to last Halloween night and I think of the noise 850 people makewhen they’re standing on their feet, dancing to the Time Warp, it’s just so good.”
This year’s screening will be held at the Rialto, a venue that seems fitting for a celebrated event of this caliber. Both the stage and screen are ample and the theatre itself is beautiful. But Phil conceivably emphasized the most important part: “You can buy beer!”
Attendees of the event should not arrive at the venue empty-handed. Audience participation is encouraged throughout the show, but especially at certain designated moments in the movie. Ticket-holders should bring with them a bag of rice, a small water-gun, a newspaper, toilet paper and toast. They should be ready to toss these throughout the show. As for what to wear, keep this in mind: showing skin at an event like this is never a bad thing. Although the audience is looking ahead at a screen and performers, cast members are watching the audience as well.
Their greatest delight during an event like this is to stare straight at ticket holders who are both creative and lively. “It’s not just our show. A lot of theatre performers will say the show belongs to the audience because that’s where you get your energy from. There’s no other show that belongs to the audience more than Rocky,” says Le Maistre, who this year will once again play the movie’s notorious transvestite Dr. Frank-N-Furter.
Shyness and reservation is not what the actors and producers are looking for in their audience but if you are prepared to dress a little more provocatively than usual, throw things at people you have never met, scream obscenities at the top of your lungs and most importantly, if you are ready to have the time of your life, then this is one Halloween event you do not want to miss.
The party will go on from Oct. 26 to 31. For more info check out www.rockyhorrormontreal.com