BWW Review: THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW at Richmond Triangle Players Thrills the Audience
The run sold out almost instantly, but "The Rocky Horror Show" at Richmond Triangle Players is too fun to not review. The 1973 musical by Richard O'Brien was a hit in London but not in New York, and of course it was later made into the spectacularly successful late-night movie favorite. It's wildly uneven and doesn't make a lot of sense, but there's no denying how much enjoyment it provides.
Not to dwell on the story, but in case you missed it, the very vanilla Brad and Janet have an automotive breakdown shortly after their engagement. They walk through the rain to a castle where an odd bunch of folks continually fail to let them phone for help. Eventually an outrageously attired scientist appears, and then his buff creation, Rocky, shows up, too. There are assistants and hangers-on and a science fiction angle to the tale.
Michael Hawke takes a rare directing turn here, with great results. The pacing is speedy, the musical direction by Kim Fox is tight, and Lucian Restivo's sound design is perfect. That's a good thing, because the voices on display are beyond terrific. Richmond audiences know that Anne Michelle Forbes (Columbia) is a great singer, and Luke Newsome (Brad), Carlen Kernish (Eddie and Dr. Scott) and Jim Morgan (Frank 'N' Furter) outdo themselves vocally. But the Triangle Players debutantes Kaitlyn Tate (Magenta) and Madeline Witmer (Janet) are spectacular, and Levi Meerovich (Riff Raff) does things with his voice that are beyond wonderful.
The physical performances of Morgan and Adam Turck (Rocky) are impressive, too. Jeffrey Cole is great as the officious narrator, and there's a hardworking chorus that makes the most of Kate Belleman's cheerful choreography. Frank Foster's scenic design does wonders with flowing cloth, and Andrew Bonniwell's lights are especially fun. Sheila Russ's costumes, Joel Furtick's hair and makeup designs, Restivo's projections, and Breezy Lee Potter's props make the other visual elements as sexy and funny as they should be.
Hope you didn't miss it. Next time Triangle Players announces a limited run, you'd better run.
"The Rocky Horror Show" by Richmond Triangle Players at the Robert B. Moss Theatre, 1300 Altamont St.
Through: October 26
Tickets: rtriangle.org (The show is sold out, but standbys might get a seat)
Photo credit: John MacLellan