Rocky Horror  Show
Rocky Horror Show to Open at Bway's Circle Nov. 15 Instead of Halloween
30-AUG-2000
Producer Jordan Roth's revival of Richard O'Brien's The Rocky Horror Show, originally said to be opening Halloween night, will in fact open Nov. 15, production sources now say. As reported earlier, preview performances begin Oct. 20 at Circle in the Square. Roth has scheduled shows running Tues.-Fri. at 8 PM, Sat. at 5 and 9:45 PM and Sun. at 2 and 7 PM.
Roth's revival of the cult musical, The Rocky Horror Show, will feature an eclectic cast, including Dick Cavett (Into the Woods, Otherwise Engaged, television's "The Dick Cavett Show"), Lea DeLaria (On the Town, Chicago, The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told, "The First Wives Club"), Joan Jett (her Broadway debut), Jarrod Emmick (Damn Yankees, Miss Saigon), Raul Esparza (Evita, Slaughterhouse 5), Daphne Rubin-Vega (Rent, Two Sisters and a Piano, Flawless ), Alice Ripley (Side Show, James Joyce's The Dead, King David, Les Miz, Sunset Boulevard) and Tom Hewitt (Disney's The Lion King, Art School for Scandal, The Sisters Rosensweig, Jeffrey).
O Brien's 1975 musical will feature comedienne-actress-singer DeLaria as Eddie/Dr. Scott, rocker Jett as Columbia, author-actor-talk show host Cavett as the Narrator, Hewitt as Frank 'n' Furter, Rubin-Vega as Magenta, Ripley as Janet, Emick as Brad and Esparza as Riff Raff.
The production team, under director Christopher Ashley comprises choreographer Jerry Mitchell (The Full Monty, Hedwig, Jeffrey, Jam on the Groove), scenic designer David Rockwell (Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Theatre, Mohegan Sun Casino, Cirque Du Soliel Theatres), lighting designer Paul Gallo (Titanic, Smokey Joe's Cafe), costume designer David Woolard (Damn Yankees,The Who's Tommy, The Donkey Show, "A Few God Men"), sound designer Richard Fitzgerald, musical director Henry Aronson and orchestrations by Doug Katsaros (Footloose).
Director Christopher Ashley (Drama Dept.'s Communicating Doors, As Thousands Cheer and Claudia Shear's Blown Sideways Through Life at the New York Theatre Workshop) will helm the show. Roth is the son of producer Daryl Roth (Wit, Three Tall Women and The Bomb-itty of Errors) and himself the producer of the Off-Broadway hit, The Donkey Show.
Producer Jordan Roth has made clear choices for the revival. "It's a going to be a very non-traditional Broadway show," Roth told Playbill On-Line in July. The producer said the show will be "absolutely as interactive" as audiences would expect The Rocky Horror Show to be. Over the years, the stage and film versions of the show have engendered a strong fan base, which, despite its size, has been described as a cult following. "People can expect the show to be done in the same way that audiences have always responded to Rocky Horror," Roth said, "meaning the way that the music and characters inspire people to sing and dance and interact with each other. That's the experience of the Rocky Horror Show live."
The stage version of the show ran on Broadway for about one month in 1975. The film version, "The Rocky Horror Picture Show," was also released in 1975 and was directed by Jim Sharman. The film featured many members of the Broadway cast and starred Tim Curry, Susan Sarandon, Barry Bostwick, Richard O'Brien, Jonathan Adams, Meatloaf, Little Nell (Campbell), Charles Gray and Patricia Quinn.
Though Roth's current Off-Broadway show, The Donkey Show, was adapted from Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream and his mother's recent hit, The Bomb-itty of Errors, was based on the Bard's Comedy of Errors, there is no adaptation planned for The Rocky Horror Picture Show. "This is not going to be an adaptation," Roth insists. "The movie was actually based on the original stage show, which it followed quite faithfully. This is the stage show and it's not adapted, reworked or re-concepted.' But, it is certainly going to be a 'Rocky Horror' experience unlike any other."
Tickets are $30-$79.50. Circle in the Square is located at 1633 Broadway, on 50th St. For tickets call Tele-Charge at (212) 239-6200.
-- By Murdoch McBride



Rocky Leads Announced

The people behind the upcoming Broadway revival of The Rocky Horror Show have finally confirmed most of the leading players for their production, which is set to open on November 13th at the Circle in the Square Theater.
Although there are no proven box office draws in the leading roles, the cast is shaping up as an eclectic mix of theater pros, pop culture icons and lesbian role models. Joan Jett, Dick Cavett, Daphne Rubin-Vega, Alice Ripley, Jarrod Emick and Lea DeLaria have all been confirmed as castmembers. The biggest question mark at this point is who will play Rocky, the hunky creation of Dr. Frank 'n' Furter. Bernard Telsey Casting, who is handling the show, has even begun placing ads in HX and other gay bar magazines looking for bodybuilders who can sing.
Jett will make her Broadway debut as Columbia, the off-beat Frank 'N' Furter groupie. Jett is best known to be the 80s rocker who spawned such hits as “I Hate Myself For Loving You,” “Crimson and Clover” and “I Love Rock 'n' Roll.” Jett told Broadway.com that despite her lack of Broadway experience, this is not her first theatrical pursuit. “Theater was one of the first things I was interested in as a kid, even before rock and roll,” she said. “I was into theater in junior high school and putting on the school plays and things like that. So it's always something that's interested me.”
Ripley has been cast as Janet, the innocent all-American girl. Ripley was in the original Broadway cast of The Who's Tommy, Sunset Boulevard, King David, Side Show and James Joyce's The Dead. Her work in Side Show, in which she and Emily Skinner (also returning to Broadway in The Full Monty) played Siamese twins, earned her a Drama Desk and Tony Award Nomination. She was also seen on Broadway as Fantine in Les Miserables. Check out Broadway.com's video footage of Alice crooning her solo rock songs at She Rocks Broadway.
Jarrod Emick makes a return to the stage as Brad, the nerdy dupe who, with Janet, stumbles into Frank ‘n’ Furtner’s lair. Emick won the 1994 Best Featured Actor in a Musical Tony Award for his performance in Damn Yankees. Emick was also said to be a contender for the role of Curly in the Broadway revival of Oklahoma! before that show’s Broadway rebirth was delayed.
Tom Hewitt will take on the legendary role of the sweet transvestite, Frank 'n' Furter. Hewitt’s Broadway credits include roles in The Sisters Rosensweig, The School for Scandal, Art and his current gig as Scar in The Lion King. Off-Broadway he has made appearances in Jeffrey, Beau Gest, Richard III and Othello. Hewitt has the intimidating task of following in the large footsteps of Tim Curry, who played the role in the film. “Tim's performance is iconic," Hewitt told Broadway.com. "The breakdown for the audition said 'we don't want a Tim Curry imitation,' but to set about working on it and not to do Tim Curry is... he's just so it and so right for the part. It's hard in a lot of ways not to manifest him in a lot of degrees.”
For a gender twist, Lea DeLaria will play Eddie and Dr. Scott, roles originated by Meatloaf. DeLaria earned an Obie Award, Theatre World Award and Drama Desk nomination for her performance in 1998’s On The Town. Her other theatrical credits include the Encores! production of L’il Abner, the Chicago tour and the recent Actors’ Fund reading on The Women.
Rent's first and most popular Mimi, Daphne Rubin-Vega, will take on the role of Magenta, the creepy sister of Riff Raff. She told Broadway.com that she's not afraid of the potential rabid nature of the Rocky audiences though. “As long as they don't throw things that hurt us, I think we'll be fine,” Rubin-Vega joked. For her performance in Rent, Rubin-Vega earned the Theatre World Award and Obie Award. She also received Tony and Drama Desk Nominations for her performance. Since leaving Rent she has worked on her recording and film careers, appearing in Wild Things and Flawless. Be sure to watch Daphne performing at She Rocks Broadway.
Cavett will star as the Narrator. Although best known for hosting various incarnations of The Dick Cavett Show, he has been on Broadway before in Otherwise Engaged and Into the Woods.
Raul Esparza will play Riff Raff, the bizarre and slightly sinister keeper of the gate. Esparza is best known for his appearance as Che Guevara in the recent Evita tour.
24-year-old Jordan Roth (The Donkey Show) makes a Broadway producing debut with The Rocky Horror Show. “Everybody's been dying for Rocky Horror to come to New York,” Roth said in his Broadway.com Q&A. “I think audiences are looking for and finding new ways of experiencing live entertainment. We've seen the trend over the last ten years and all of these interactive shows borrow something from Rocky Horror. It only makes sense to let audiences experience the original.”
Christopher Ashley (Jeffrey, The Most Fabulous Story..., As Thousands Cheer) is directing the production. His only Broadway credit is last season's short-lived thriller Voices in the Dark. Ashley told Broadway.com that the creative team, “really wanted a cast that felt really fresh, that felt really eclectic, sexy… [like] you've never seen them together in a show."
"It" choreographer Jerry Mitchell is creating the movement for the show. “The thing that makes me so excited about the project is it is a chance for people to feel free,” Mitchell told Broadway.com. Best known for his racy work on the annual Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS benefit Broadway Bares and The Full Monty, Mitchell joked about his reputation. “All of the sudden I'm the choreographer with nudity in every show,” he joked, “It happens! What can I say? My reputation proceeds me, I guess!” Come watch some of Mitchell's sexy footwork of Broadway Bares 2000.
August 22, 2000 (12:36PM)