THE prospect of a fully professional production of ‘The Rocky Horror Show’ in Hobart has seen performers from far and wide clambering to be a part of the unprecedented Tasmanian show.
Eighty interstate performers and 30 locals snapped up the opportunity to audition over three days last month, with producers receiving more than 400 expressions of interest.
One performer from London, who has performed in the production in the United Kingdom, has also thrown his hat into the ring, auditioning via video.
Producer John X said even after years of performing professionally interstate, he was surprised at the interest from performers wanting to come down to Tasmania.
“My phone and messenger lit up as soon as we announced auditions, with plenty of former cast mates from past shows wanting to come down and be a part of what we are creating,” he said.
“We had to make difficult decisions just to cut the list down to a number that we could audition over three days.”
The professional production is set to raise the bar for theatre in Tasmania, with producers confident it will be the state’s biggest theatre production to date.
“With what we have seen so far, we are confident we will have a stellar cast of mainland and Tasmanian theatre professionals taking part – the quality of performers has been amazing,” John X said.
“With a budget of well more than $1 million, we know that Tasmanian audiences will never have seen anything like it.”
The Rocky Horror Show will make a long-awaited return to Tasmania for the first time in 34 years and will hit the Theatre Royal stage in October.
“This is going to provide enormous opportunities for Tasmanian theatre practitioners to work on a show of this size and scale either on stage or backstage,” John X said.
“This will be the only season of The Rocky Horror Show in Australia in 2020, so people will be flying down to Tasmania to come and see it in our beautifully historic and intimate Theatre Royal.”
The production team negotiated with the London-based Rocky Horror Company for more than 12 months to get it across the line and jumped through many hoops to satisfy them that they would put on a production to their exacting standards.
The musical is packed with classic songs like ‘I’m Just a Sweet Transvestite’, ‘Damn It Janet’, ‘I Can Make You A Man’, ‘Touch-a Touch-a Touch Me’, ‘Over At The Frankenstein Place’ and, of course, ‘The Time Warp.’
Written by Richard O’Brien, The Rocky Horror Show made its debut at London’s internationally famous Royal Court Theatre Upstairs in 1973.
While it’s essentially a Rock ‘n’ Roll show, it has also become an iconic brand and an entity unto itself, which has defied the decades and continued to grow in popularity.
What ensues is a night of music, mayhem and naughtiness where fantasy becomes reality.
Caption: From left, Sam Dean, Kristy Murtagh, Imogen Moore and Anna Kidd perform their ‘Rocky Horror Show’ singing auditions with pianist Iestyn Parry.