Don’t Dream It, Be It

It was astounding. Time was fleeting. Madness took its toll… And in that moment of madness, I said yes to the random couple at the bar who’d just invited me to a live cast, midnight screening of the Rocky Horror Picture Show. I don’t even know how we got onto the topic, but I try to be a yes man and yes is always the right answer when it’s a bonafide cult classic like Rocky Horror.

The “live cast” concept means a local cast of die-hard fans dresses up and acts out the movie on a stage, while the real movie plays on a screen behind them. These crazy events happen all over the world. Rocky Horror is the most common, but I’ve also heard of it happeing with Beetlejuice, Little Shop of Horrors, and The Room. It’s great to watch their interpretations and costumes. They’re dinky-di obsessed fans, so they make a considerable effort. Audience participation is encouraged (especially in the singing parts), and its normal to hear fans shouting out witty responses to things going on in the film. They even treated us with a goodie bag of props, for use at key moments. It’s one of the few situations where receiving latex gloves upon entering a show doesn’t feel weird.

The whole night was a blast. My new friends got up for a number of dances and showed me when to brandish my props. Rocky Horror is a great choice for an event like this because it’s already as whacky as can be. It’s already normal to dress up as a transvestite. It’s already a sing-a-long musical. Slutty underwear is already expected and you stand out if you’re the one who’s not wearing a feather boa. I saw one of these in NYC 10 years ago, but I think this local Connecticut one was even more fun. NYC is naturally bigger and more polished, but this small event had intimacy. When we had a drink and a laugh with the cast in the foyer afterwards, we felt like a family. A kinky, confused family.

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