“I don’t think Disney Channel was ready for this.”
Director Haley Hunsaker struts onstage in a leather jacket and hooker boots (her words) to kick off the night with a few explicit “virgin games.” More lion tamer than host, she keeps the rowdy crowd in line, while also improvising some top-notch dirty jokes.
Once the newcomers have been properly celebrated and humiliated, the show may begin. Richard O’Brien’s cult film plays on a screen in the corner while a shadow cast performs onstage, mouthing in synch with the movie.
You need nice legs and nerves of steel to perform “Rocky Horror,” and this shadow cast brings both. Hunter Buck was made to play Brad, relishing each awkward step and goody-two-shoes smile. Brittani Janish knows every insult coming Janet’s way, and she walks right into them with perfect timing.
Then there’s Frank. Jareth Spirio commands the stage from his first ridiculously fabulous entrance to the bizarre, bittersweet end. Paired with Tim Curry’s voice onscreen, he becomes a magnetic force, drawing us into his delicious depravity.
Between its broad characters and audience interaction, Rocky Horror Picture Show is a cousin to melodrama. (Admittedly, the creepy cousin who never gets invited for Christmas.) That’s why Iron Springs Chateau, home to melodramas year-round, makes a great venue. Everyone gets a good view of the stage, while the acoustics let you hear the hilarious riffs flying out of the crowd.
Really, darling, who could ask for more?
Doors open at 7:30 and the room fills fast. Fortunately, it’s the perfect spot to people-watch. Grab a table with your friends, order a few drinks and soak up the colorful characters.
“Rocky Horror Picture Show” includes heavy sexual content, skimpy costumes, cannibalism, and vulgarities from the audience. If you’re over 18, enjoy!
Iron Springs Chateau
444 Ruxton Ave, Manitou Springs
Box Office: (719) 685-5104
Playing October 20 – November 4, 2017
Admission: $15 general, plus $2 for goodie bags with props
Running Time: 2 hours, 15 minutes