‘Don’t Dream It, Be It’ is the central message of The Rocky Picture Show and the main reason why the musical – which is coming to Aberdeen and Inverness – is still relevant.
And presenter and Strictly winner Ore Oduba – who plays Brad Majors in the touring production of The Rocky Horror Show – would even go as far as to say the message of being your true self is even more relevant now than when it first premiered.
“It’ll be the 50th anniversary of Rocky Horror next year and I think when it started it showcased the oddities in the society whereas now it’s a lot more now about celebration,” said Ore.
“When we look at the audience… this show completely crosses generations.
Rocky Horror celebrates our differences
“You’ve got young people, 20-somethings but also older generations all in the same room sharing the same experience – it’s quite a unique show.
“It’s about how it speaks to people and people feel they can be who they are.”
Ore also thinks the show attracts a community where “everyone is different but we’re all the same”.
The stage production – as well as the cult musical comedy horror film The Rocky Horror Picture Show – follows two squeaky clean college kids – Brad Majors and Janet Weiss. Stranded at night, they seek shelter in the home of an eccentric transvestite scientist where they meet many wild characters.
Ore said: “Brad and Janet just got engaged and when they’re driving through the forest their car breaks down. They stumble upon Dr Frank’n’Furter’s castle and they undergo quite the transformation.”
‘There’s a bit of Brad in all of us’
While the story may be silly and absurd, the Strictly winner thinks there is a bit of his character Brad in all of us.
He said: “I think when you look at Brad… he’s a bit geeky and he’s a very conservative college kid but by the end of the show, he comes all out in his heels and suspenders and his true self is shining and for all to see.
“Some of us feel like that ‘this is the person I’m supposed to be’ but actually, you know who you really are and sometimes it takes a show like Rocky Horror to realise that.
“It’s the idea of being kind of caged animals because we all have a lot of reservations and inhibitions and things we hold back. We’re just waiting to be unleashed.
“Before lockdown, I might not have taken on this job but it (the pandemic) gave us all a new perspective on life and what we want out of it and actually, one of the big reasons why I wanted to take it on was to have fun and not live my life confined by how other people think it should be.”
Winning Strictly Come Dancing
The TV and radio presenter partnered with Joanne Clifton on the 14th series of Strictly Come Dancing in 2016 and danced his way to victory. Ore says it was the popular competition that encouraged him to branch out into the world of musical theatre.
He said: “When I finished Strictly, I realised how much I loved performing and being on stage where you can showcase your skills and talent and I didn’t want to let that go.
“That was a big part of my journey to musical theatre – so I could keep performing and make it my job and I’ve been so lucky since. This is my third musical. I’ve spent a lot of time on stage and it’s been magical and rewarding.”
Fabulous costumes and great songs
Rocky Horror offers complete escapism thanks to its fabulous costumes and catchy tunes – including Damn It, Janet, and Time Warp.
“I always say the great thing about Rocky is that you leave your troubles and inhibition at the door,” said Ore.
“It’s just about having fun and having a party – that’s what we missed during Covid-19. We missed being able to escape and not feel confined and restricted. So that’s what we do every single night.”
And according to Ore, audiences all over the UK have been “really up for it”.
“A lot of people get dressed up for Rocky Horror. It’s not a requirement but many people do. I love that before the show people go for drinks or dinner – and they’re all dressed like they do.
“I just like the idea of going to Pizza Express dressed as Dr Frank’n’Furter, Columbia or Magenta.”
How to book tickets to see The Rocky Horror Show in Aberdeen and Inverness
Richard O’Brien’s legendary rock ‘n’ roll musical The Rocky Horror Show is in Eden Court’s Empire Theatre in Inverness from Monday February 28 until Saturday March 5. Tickets can be purchased here.
Aberdeen theatre-lovers can look forward to seeing the show at His Majesty’s from Monday April 25 to Saturday April 30. Tickets can be booked here.