“It's just a jump to the left, and then a step to the right.”
If those lines mean anything to you, then you know it's time for Lyric Theatre's raciest, raunchiest production of “Richard O'Brien's The Rocky Horror Show,” set for Wednesday through Nov. 2 at the Plaza Theater, 1725 NW 16.
“The Rocky Horror Show” is one of Lyric's most popular productions, and this year's show features some basic changes courtesy of director Matthew Alvin Brown.
While all the music and songs in the original musical will be there, Brown is taking the play from the original spooky mansion to a rundown, haunted traveling circus with the beloved characters becoming performers or misdirected visitors.
The cinematic version, “The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” has entertained generations of late-night movie fans with the wild tale of newly-engaged couple Brad and Janet and their adventures one rainy night when a flat tire forces them to seek help at a rundown Gothic mansion peopled by a cross-dressing scientist, Dr. Frank-N-Furter, his minions, party guests and his creation, Rocky.
The original stage production has basically the same plot, but with an extra song sung by Brad.
Over the years, the movie and the play have become an interactive experience between either the stage or screen and the audience, and Lyric's production continues the dialogue.
“This production will have all the songs, but some songs will have more verses,” Brown said, sitting inside the theater before a rehearsal and painting his fingernails a deep, glittery purple. “We have moved the show to a trashy, awful, dirty, dead, broken-down road show though.”
Brown loves the movie and the play.
“I watched the movie all my life. It's my favorite,” he said. “I imagine it in another world, in another time, in another dimension. It has iconic attributes. I plan to give people what they expect, but shockingly, in an interactive live show.”
Brown says to expect to see the things you love about “Rocky Horror” combined with outrageously clever moments.
Reprising the role of flirty Dr. Frank-N-Furter is Monte Reigel Wheeler, from Wichita, Kan. At the interview, Wheeler sported a full beard and said he planned to keep it — or most of it — for the show.
For the uninitiated, he'll also be wearing a bustier, garter belt, fishnet hose and very high-heeled shoes. “I'm about 6'4” in costume,” he said.
It's apparent Brown and Wheeler are friends onstage and off. During the interview, they sat on aisle seats on different rows and cheerfully interrupted each other during this interview.
“It's so great to do delightful work with your friends,” Wheeler said. “It is going to be an insane party every night, and you have to have your friends around for that.”
Lexi Windsor and Sean Eckhard play Brad and Janet, and Colin Anderson is Riff Raff. Renee Anderson plays Columbia, Vince Leseney is Eddie and Dr. Scott, Kate Moore is Magenta, W. Jerome Stevenson is the narrator, and Sean Burroughs plays Rocky. Other cast members include Cristela Carrizales, Elizabeth Koepp, Elliott Mattox and Brian Stockton as Phantoms.
Chris Castleberry is the choreographer, and Washington, D.C.'s Collin Ranney designed the set. Brian T. Hamilton is musical director, costumes were designed by Jeffrey Meek, and Brad Poarch is the sound designer.
Brown wants everyone to know this production would get a hard “R” rating for language and sexually explicit language and situations, but if you're familiar with the material and the production, come out for a night of fun and laughter and yes, to dance “The Time Warp.”
The production is sponsored by Watts & Watts Attorneys at Law, Chesapeake Energy and The Oklahoman.