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The Rocky Horror Show

Is it astounding? Is time fleeting? Is madness taking its toll? 

That’s right, with Halloween only just behind us, it’s time to do the Time-Warp again and propel ourselves back into a spooky fright with the latest rendition of The Rocky Horror Show at Norwich Theatre Royal, directed by Christopher Luscombe. 

Prepare yourself for unending camp fun, the thrusting of scantily clad hips and the kick of a bedazzled high heel laced in fishnet stockings. 

Leave your reservations at home as you enter a world of aliens, engineered humans and some good ol’ fashioned Rock ’n’ Roll insanity. 

Image by The Other Richard

Although the cast was limited, due to unfortunate circumstances, it never showed. Every cast member appeared on stage with the intention of ensuring everyone had a scarily good time and left the theatre beyond satisfied. 

As is Rocky Horror tradition, the crowd were an additional member of the cast, constantly interrupting the scripts with raunchy lines that tested the actor’s ability to not crack. Everyone came dressed to the nine’s, ready to get lost in the mania that Rocky Horror creates so well. 

Now, I couldn’t kick off a review of the cast without first mentioning the show stealer, Mr. Philip Franks (from The Darling Buds of May) as The Narrator. His dry wit and, at times, scandalous behaviour was just utter joy to watch. His performance will have the audience gasping, covering their mouths in feigned shock and tipping their head back as they roar with gut-jumping laughter. He was perfectly cast as the eccentric character and seemed to truly love every second he was on stage. 

Other standouts included Rachel Grundy’s Janet, her pipes and enthusiasm are not to be trifled with!, Strictly winner Ore Oduba’s Brad, of whom perfectly understands when to play up Brad’s charming naivety for a good chuckle, Ben Westhead’s Rocky, his physically demanding performance never even remotely gave the impression he was ever winded- incredible!, and Reece Budin’s role as the loveable, if a little creepy, Riff Raff.

Ben Westhead as Rocky, image by The Other Richard

Now, on to the character you’ve all been waiting for… the incredible Kristian Lavercombe  (who was covering for Stephen Webb and Jordan Fox at a moments notice) as Dr Frank’n’Furter. His performance was the kind of exuberant portrayal I was hoping for, his entire body (quite literally) is put into the whole performance as the beloved Frank. Every movement, from his hand gestures to the curl of his scarlet coloured lip, perfectly captured the salacious, confident and, at times, selfish character of Frank. He was truly astounding and truly earned his standing ovations. 

Expect to hear all of the favourite Rocky Horror classics, like “Dammit Janet”, “Sweet Transvestite” and, of course, “The Time-Warp”, which had all the audience members up out of their seats and shaking their hips. 

The Rocky Horror Show is an unforgettably good time that indulges your naughtiest desires and wickedest imagination- a true joy to watch! Don’t forget to bring your tightest corset and your highest heels, you’re in for a wild and hauntingly fun ride! 

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