Director Jason Breaux believes no two productions of "The Rocky Horror Show" are the same.
A different cast guided by a different director makes each show unique, says the first-time director of Theatre Baton Rouge's production of "Rocky."
Breaux says he's putting in his own tweaks to the show.
"All of the favorite things will still be there, but as a fan of old science fiction movies, I'm putting more emphasis on the old sci-fi references in the show," Breaux says. " 'Rocky Horror' is full of them, and we're highlighting them more."
You'll see them in the camp of "Time Warp" and in the traditional audience callbacks.
There will be no real food, like the toast thrown when Dr. Frank-N-Furter, this year played by Jonathan Thomas, calls for a toast.
"But we will have goodie bags for the audience," Breaux says. "They'll be filled with stuff they can use in the callbacks."
And the master of ceremonies, as always, is the self-proclaimed sweet transvestite from Transsexual Transylvania, Frank-N-Furter.
It's in his castle that naive, newly engaged Brad and Janet, played by C.J. Carver and Rebecca Smith, take refuge when their car breaks down during a rainstorm.
And once inside, they quickly find themselves captives among Frank's chorus of Phantoms, his servants Riff Raff and Magenta, and his groupie, Columbia.
They soon learn that Frank is a mad scientist on a mission to create his own version of the Frankenstein monster with muscles.
The experiment and night end with its own set of sci-fi consequences that can't be stopped, even by the "Time Warp," the iconic dance performed by the Phantoms at the beginning.
"We just stand there wishing we could jump in and do the Time Warp," Carver says. "But as Brad and Janet, Rebecca and I are trying to stand in a corner as far away as possible, because we don't want to be noticed."
But Frank-N-Furter insists on showering them with unwanted attention, not because he thinks they deserve the spotlight but because of his potential personal benefit.
"He's definitely narcissistic," Thomas says.
But Frank's narcissism isn't the true challenge of playing this role.
"I have to wear 5-inch heels through the whole show," Thomas says. "If they aren't 5 inches, they're close. They have platforms on the bottom."
Thomas makes his grand entrance by walking down the steps in the center aisle of the audience's stadium-style seating.
"I've been wearing the heels during rehearsal, and I haven't fallen yet," Thomas says. "I almost toppled once, but I didn't fall."
The heels only add to Frank's stage presence, which he strives to make bigger-than-life in his campy science fiction domain.
"'Rocky Horror' is definitely campy, and that's what makes it so much fun," Breaux says. "And we can't help laughing during rehearsal. We hope the audience has just as much fun as we're having."
'The Rocky Horror Show'
Theatre Baton Rouge's annual Halloween season fundraiser production
WHEN: 8 p.m. Oct. 18-19; 8 p.m. and 11:59 p.m. Oct. 20; 8 p.m. Oct. 25-26; 8 p.m. and 11:50 p.m. Oct. 27.
WHERE: Theatre Baton Rouge's Studio Theatre, 7155 Florida Blvd.
TICKETS/INFO: $30; $19, students. (225) 924-6496 or theatrebr.org.