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October 2015 - Extras - A Month of Rocky

It’s the cult classic that has everyone pulling out their fishnets and corsets. The Rocky Horror Picture Show was considered a cinematic failure when it premiered in 1975, but thanks to a midnight showing and some catchy callbacks, it became an annual, sometimes monthly, treasure. New Mexico is getting Rocky Fever this month with two options of seeing the beloved show on both stage and screen.

In 2011, PRIDE & Equality magazine, in the attempt to promote their publication, came up with a nutty idea. Rocky Horror was an annual tradition in Albuquerque, but hadn’t seen the light of day for almost ten years. “I had never seen the Rocky Horror Picture Show live before,” admits Teresa Ewers, publisher of PRIDE & Equality. “I realized that if I wanted to see it, I was gonna have to make it happen.” Ewers, partnering with veteran Rocky performers and friends, Dustin Martinez and Ri Ri Syn Cyr, brought the classic to The Guild Cinema for a two-night show. A week before the first show happened, tickets for both shows sold out, which lead to a third show on a Sunday evening, which also sold out. Every year since then, the magazine presents the movie with a full shadow cast and props, allowing generations to take part in the full stage experience - selling out every single year. “It’s been a whirlwind,” shares Ewers. “It’s been exciting to see that this one annual event lead to others creating their own monthly shows. Even though the groups didn’t work out or may be struggling, we’re excited that we inspired and continue to offer this event for our fifth year anniversary.”

That’s right, five years! They have a five-year-old and they show no signs of stopping. When asked what is the secret behind their staying power, the answer was simple. “I think it’s two-fold,” says Ewers. “First, the special thing about Rocky is it’s almost like Christmas. Rocky is that time of year that you anticipate. Our show offers that supply and demand for our fans. The second part is quality. You have to have the right people on your shadow cast that understand what the show means. The right people that are committed to make the show entertaining for the audience - the audience is what the show is about.”

Well this month, audiences are also getting to see Rocky on stage. Musical Theater Southwest is presenting the Rocky Horror Show, the musical stage show that inspired the movie. MTS realized the excitement that Rocky Horror brings. Jeff Cleveland, a set designer from New York, will be creating the sets for this production, along with Jeff’s partner who is designing the costumes. The stage, which is quite different from the movie experience, is still one to witness and get under your Rocky Horror belt. “With our production it’s more of an immersive theater project. It’s a complete environment,” shares Jonathan Gallegos, who plays Frank-N-Furter in the production. “They’re not by-standers, they participate.”

The Fifth Annual Rocky Horror Anniversary Show at the Guild Cinema is on October 23rd-24th. Tickets can be purchased at The Rocky Horror Show presented by Musical Theater Southwest will run for the month of October, with opening night on October 9th. Tickets can be purchased at Bring Rocky into your life this October and “let there be lips!”

tWitch Cover Story
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