I had never seen The Rocky Horror Picture Show before last Saturday night. I had heard stories, however. Last weekend’s show, which was performed at a bar in Itaewon, was a shadow cast performance, and it was absolutely brilliant. Two friends joined a handful of other actors to mimic and mime the movie as it played in the background. Because of the sheer awesome absurdity of the movie and the novelty and charm of the performance, my friends and I had a blast on this Halloween weekend.
Before Halloween could begin, however, we had to get Halloween costumes. There are a couple of Halloween stores that I know of in Seoul. I wrote about one just a couple weeks ago. On the way to it, I quite appropriately came across this slide from Hell. Four stories tall and attached to a kindergarten school on three floors, it promises death to any man, women, or child that dares ride it. I loved it.
I got my costume together, and transformed myself into a zombie for Halloween this year. I’m no make-up artist, but I think I was pretty successfully scary. You couldn’t tell from this picture, however. I look more like a guy who just got his butt kicked by two 12 year-olds.
I did manage to scare many Koreans while walking to work and riding the subways in Seoul.
Most notably, when I passed a police car, it turned around to block my path as I was walking through my neighborhood. The police got out of the car looking very serious. They spoke some stern Korean to me. I responded with a blank zombie stare. Then one of them pointed to the fake blood all over my face and clothes. I smiled and said, “Hal-O-ween pawty.” Sudden relief washed over their faces. We laughed. One of them was still a little suspicious and kept asking me questions in Korean, but the older one was saying “OK OK” and waving me away. I left grinning like a fool. Mission accomplished.
Saturday came around, and some friends and I arrived at Bull and Barrel to pay the $10 to see the show. I was skeptical of how well the shadow cast would work when I’d first heard about the show, but I was drunk on fun when the opening number ended. (Also, beer.) The actors kept time with the movie almost perfectly. Their quirkiness and cross-dressing added to the movie immensely.
Here are some shots from the epic production.
Thankfully Aladin, Abu, and the stroke-stricken pirate were not in the production but sitting behind me. I did not recognize my friend Netalia under that fake beard.
The lead female role was played by a man, and the lead male was a woman. They were both quite convincing.
And then in a flurry of “what-the-heck-just-happened”s, the show was over.
I saw the movie. I saw the shadow cast performance. Now all I have to do is watch the movie by myself and figure out what the heck happened. All I know is that Tim Curry is amazing, the cast of the shadow performance put on a hilarious and top-notch performance, and that this event was the highlight of my Halloween. And between scaring my students, scaring Korean police, and dancing to Halloween music like the Monster Mash in a club full of zombies, Care Bears, and other costumed freaks; this was a tough Halloween to star in.
Currently residing an hour outside of Seoul, South Korea, Sergio Cabaruvias is doing his utmost not to appear lost or confused. So far, he’s managed. After graduating with degrees in English and journalism and after working with underprivileged youth, Serg embarked from Southern California for Pyeongtaek, South Korea to gain experience as an amateur adventurer. Since arriving he has swung on vines in the jungles of Taiwan, scaled mountains in the rocky city of Busan, driven a scooter along the edge of a massive, marble gorge, and explored some of Tokyo’s seedier areas. Moving to South Korea has been the best decision of his life.