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Dammit Janet! Rocky Horror wows in GOH

Richard O'Brien's cult rock and roll musical Rocky Horror Show arrived in Belfast on Monday, we popped along to The Grand Opera House last night and boy did we have a great time

This cult classic has been entertaining audiences for over 45 years from it's humble beginnings back in 1974 in London's Royal Court Theatre. The show has spawned a successful Movie in 1975 with Iconic cast such as Tim Curry and Susan Sarandon, a TV movie in 2016 which seen Tim Curry as the Narrator and other household names such as Laverne Cox as Frank and Adam Lambert as Eddie and sell out tours all over the world.

So for those who have lived under a rock whats it all about?

The story follows newly engaged couple Brad (Ben Adams) and Janet (Joanne Clifton) stumble across an old castle after their car breaks down.They find themselves in the lair and lab of Transylvanian Transvestite, Frank N Furter (Stephen Webb), accompanied by his adoring entourage.

Attendees of the show vary from the uninitiated in casual dress to those in full character costume. Everyone is welcome and the pre-show excitement is palpable. The show jolts to life with the band led by MD George Carter, delivering the high-octane soundtrack packed full of power chords.

Laura Harrison as the Usherette unabashedly belts the opening number, "Science Fiction/Double Feature" to whooping applause as she welcomes us to the show. She also delights the audience as Magenta leading the immensely energetic "Time Warp".

Adams and Clifton are again suitably cast opposite each other after appearing in the recent UK tour of Flashdance together, this time as naive lovebirds. Adams' boyband vocal suits Brad's clean-cut character and Clifton delivers an engaging and wide-eyed performance as Janet.

Webb commands the stage as Frank N Furter, garnering huge cheers of encouragement from the crowd as he struts around in fishnets. The cheeky bedroom sequence at the top of the second act is hilariously portrayed by Webb, Adams and Clifton.

Philip Franks as the narrator, charismatically steers us through the chaotic and silly tale. He responds to shoutouts from the audience with quick wit. His comments on Brexit and other current affairs had us all in a wrinkle lol

Callum Evans shows off his muscular physique and acrobatic skills as Frank N Furter's Frankenstein-esque creation, Rocky. Between somersaults and press-ups he also displays a strong vocal in "The Sword of Damocles" as he adjusts to his new surroundings.

Ross Chisari joined the U.K cast after preforming in the Australian tour, he doubles us as Eddie and Dr Scott, the latter of the 2 was my favourite, his comic timing and accept worked wonderfully.

Christopher Luscombe's direction ensures gaps are left for the audience to participate in the well-rehearsed, and sometimes spontaneous, shoutouts in the show.

The scenery generally is modest in quality - for example, the flat pack nature of Brad and Janet's car.

The colourful lighting ensures bright hues blast from every inch of the stage, and effective trickery suggests lightning bolts and laser beams.

Costumes were all incredible, the stage was full of glittering corsets and eye-catching lingerie, contrasting with Brad and Janet's vintage formal wear.

Choreography by Nathan M Wright matches the high-energy score and the cast appear to be having a ball delivering the catchy numbers. Everyone is on their feet joining in with a finale reprise of "Time Warp".

This new production of Rocky Horror Show is an indulgently silly evening of theatre. Whether you're well versed in the participatory element of the show's following, or completely new to the experience that is attending a showing of Rocky, you're sure to have a blast.

Tickets though limited can be found on the website

We also had the pleasure of interviewing Bem, Joanna, Ross and Callum, have a read via this link

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