The Rocky Horror Show, 1973

The Rocky Horror Show, 1973

The Rocky Horror Picture Show began as a six-week workshop project in June 1973 in the Royal Court's tiny 60-seat Theatre Upstairs. Richard O'Brien wrote the book, music and lyrics, as an homage to horror films. The show is an outrageous assemblage of science fiction movies, Marvel comics and rock 'n' roll. Two middle American small-town kids are confronted by the sexual complications of the decadent 1970s, represented in the person of the mad 'doctor' Frank N Furter, a 'sweet transvestite' from the planet Transexual in the galaxy of Transylvania.

Tim Curry played the role at the Royal Court and went on to huge success in the transfer and in the film.

It rapidly outgrew the Royal Court and transferred first to a converted cinema and then to the 500-seat King's Road Theatre where it sold out nightly.

With the 1975 film version and numerous provincial productions, the show has taken on cult status. People dress up in the style of the characters, and there are set audience responses. You can even find an 'audience participation script' online.