If you’ve never been to a live production of Richard O’Brien’s cult rock ‘n’ roll musical you are officially what’s known as a Rocky Horror Virgin.
Blending in means being prepared, and this will require imagination – and most likely a pair of fishnet stockings. And yes that does apply to the men as well.
Here are some essential Dos and Don’ts of how to survive your first time.
Dress in your usual, casual clothes if you want to. After your first experience you may feel more adventurous next time.
Bring appropriate props such as rubber gloves, party hats, glow sticks, playing cards, a newspaper… items which are commonly used during various parts of the performance.
Consider coming dressed as one of the characters. This will give you a range of choices. You can cover up Brad and Janet style with a prim and proper preppy look, be more daring in a sexy French maid outfit à la Magenta, or channel a flamboyant Dr Frank N. Furter look in black lace corset, heels and fishnets.
Join in the Time Warp. It’s simple, fun, and the song tells you what to do…” It’s just a jump to the left, and then a step to the right…"
Shout talk back lines. Audience participation is part of the show but stick to the cues. There’s no script as such, like everything, the lines develop according to what’s appropriate for the time and place. Listen out for what to do and don’t shout out just for the sake of it.
Wear a striped top. This is taboo as apparently crew members wearing striped shirts were caught on camera when the movie was filmed.
Be mean about other people’s costumes or make fun of them. It’s not a competition, and this is a show where everyone is encouraged to let their hair down.
Throw rice or water on to the stage. In fact don’t throw anything. It’s dangerous and you really don’t want to be faced with a sea of fishnet stockings being thrown back at you if the show gets cancelled as a result.
Use talk back lines from the movie, they may not translate into the show, and anyway some of the funniest lines are ad hoc and even take the cast by surprise.
Come in a suit, sandals or an anorak. Casual is fine, but train-spotter attire definitely is not.
Panic if you get asked if you’re a (Rocky Horror) virgin. We’ve all been there before.
Be nervous. The Rocky Horror Show is all about fun and everyone has been in the same boat before you. So prepare for an experience you won’t forget or regret, and remember the tour’s golden rule:
‘There will always be someone who looks more out of place than you do!’
The road to corruption for college kids Brad and fiancée Janet continues at Blackpool Opera House 24th-29th June. More information and ticket bookings here.