Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Rocky Horror tradition continues

The room is completely black — black walls, black floor and black chairs. A row of mirrors is placed on the back wall from corner to corner. Bright lights shine down on the group of students standing on center stage.

An array of costumes cover the bodies of the cast, from corsets and fishnets to suspenders and a pair of tiny, gold shorts.

Rocky Horror is back.

In 2006, Plattsburgh State College Theater Association brought its own version of Rocky Horror to the campus.

This year is no different.

PSUC communications disorders and sciences junior and co-director Rachael Piper said the play kicks Halloween off every year for the school.
“The show comes back year after year, letting the students re-transform something old into something new,” she said.

Piper’s partner in directing, PSUC sophomore of history adolescent education, music and theater, Will Hodge said the show pulls people in the second they walk in.

“Rocky Horror is transvestites, aliens, Nazis and prostitutes all in one,” Hodge said. “This show is such a fan favorite, and it brings new people to this type of art.”

Hodge said the show brings “the freaks and the differents.”

“I am proud to say I’m a different,” he said.

Forty years ago, “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” came to life and has captivated the world ever since. In this classic movie, sweethearts Brad and Janet get stuck with a flat tire during a storm and discover the eerie mansion of Dr. Frank-N-Furter, a transvestite scientist. With the night just starting, the couple meets Frank’s house of wild characters.

Being a passionate Rocky Horror fan since the age of 4, Hodge said that this cast of students is his family and the show “baby.”

The CTA lets only students bring their creativity to life, with the chance to director and produce plays.

Piper said she enjoys seeing her cast take who she wants them to be and turn them into their own person.

“You see who they really are and how they interpret the character to be,” she said.

PSUC senior communications and public relations major Kristen Suarez is one of the many cast mates who bring their characters to life. Dressed in all black, from her heels to fishnet stockings and corset, Suarez brings her character, crazy maid Magenta alive.

Suarez wanted to try something different in theater and auditioned for the role of Magenta for Rocky Horror.

Suarez said everyone was dressed up for the parts for the audition except her.

“All I had was my big hair,” she said.

Her hair worked, and she landed the role. Suarez said getting this part was exciting for her.

“I’m a sexy, creepy alien from Transsexual Transylvania,” she said. “I wanted this part from the beginning, and I got it. It’s been really fun to play her.”

Piper and Hodge yell, “From the top,” and Suarez goes into position along with her other cast mates. Seconds later, the black door opens, and Jacob Anderson walks in with red high heels on his feet.

Anderson, freshman TV and video production major, is playing the lead antagonist, Dr. Frank-N-Furter, but the cast calls him Frank.

Anderson said the voice and dynamic of Frank is interesting.

“You have to be very outgoing to play him. It’s difficult, but I love it,” he said.

Anderson believes his character is what draws Brad and Janet to his house after their car breaks down and said these two are Frank’s “most recent prizes.”

“Everyone in his house are being forced there,” Anderson said. “After a while, none of them had left. It’s like Stockholm Syndrome, where they don’t want to leave.”

Originally trying out to be a part of the stage crew, Anderson got a call back for not one part, but three.

“I was really excited to get a part, but I thought playing the lead was really intriguing,” he said.

Since being in his first semester of college, Anderson said being a part of this show has helped him meet new people.

“In this particular situation, we had to bond as a cast really fast. I got really strong friendships out of that,” he said.

Of the students coming together and putting the production together, Suarez said she relies on other students and gives 110 percent into something that doesn’t provide class credits.

“It’s pretty spectacular on what students alone can do,” she said.

This year the show will be happening in the Giltz Auditorium, located in Hawkins Hall.

“Having the show there lets us have a better lighting, sound and seating system. It’s going to be a big step up,” Piper said.

Piper said that even though it is a lot of pressure, she is proud of the cast and she couldn’t have asked for a better one.

Premiering Oct. 30 at 9 p.m., Suarez said the show will be “kick-ass.”

“Every year, people come to this show, including alumni,” Suarez said. “It would be a shame to stop this.”

Email Samanatha Stahl at samantha.stahl@cardinalpointsonline.com

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