Los Bastardos: Facts about who and what we are…
Los Bastardos is an established and well-known theatre shadow cast that performs The Rocky Horror Picture Show. We are the longest running current DFW cast with over nine years experience. We are an accomplished, professional, reliable, and respected cast complete with a full technical crew, stage and prop crew, security team, and full stage cast.
Theatre history is as follows:
- Furneaux Theatre, March 1998-December 1998 (Left due to management change.)
- Bedford UA Theatre, June 1999-October 2000. (Closed down.)
- Furneaux Theatre, November 2000-February 2001. (Closed down.)
- Forum Theatre, April 2001-October 2001. (Closed down.)
- Medallion Theatre, October 2001-December 2001. (Closed down.)
- Ridgmar Movie Tavern, Fort Worth, March 2002-January 2003. (Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission shut program down due to “minors drinking at the theatre”.) We are still on excellent terms with the management, please see below.
- The Rock in Deep Ellum, February 2003-November 2003. (Rock club turned country.)
- Ridgmar Movie Tavern, Fort Worth, November 2004 – January 2011
- Inwood Theater, Dallas, October 2011- Current
- Alamo Drafthouse, Denton, August 2018 – Current
- Other performances and guest appearances include:
- Insomnia, Dallas
- Beautiful Creatures, Houston
- University of North Texas, Denton
- University Theatre, Commerce
- Spankee’s, Dallas
- Resurrection, Arlington
- The Church, Dallas
- Lakewood Theatre, Dallas
- Cinema 8, Austin
- Alamo Drafthouse Theatre, Austin
- University of Texas at Dallas
- Hangman’s House of Horrors, Fort Worth (3 years running)
- Grayson’s County Line, Azle
- Austin College, Sherman
- Frontier Hotel, Las Vegas
- All-Con, Dallas
- The Frisco Discovery Center, Frisco
- The Landmark Inwood Theatre, Dallas
- A-KON, Dallas
- All-Con, Dallas
- Southern Methodist University, Dallas
- Alamo Drafthouse, Cedars location, Dallas
- Ridglea Theater, Fort Worth
Just to make it known and clear, there are other Rocky Horror casts that have made appearances and made rounds in the DFW area. We would like to let address what we are and are not. We are not the 1980’s Ridglea cast, the Furneaux cast, the Domingo cast, Angelica/Magnolia cast, or the Lakewood cast. We have no affiliation with any of the above mentioned casts.
Why Rocky Works:
Rocky has been around so long and been so successful due to many factors. First of all, the movie itself is intriguing. It isn’t necessarily good, but it is different. The songs, costumes, set, and cast, however, are fantastic. The characters are colorful and patrons enjoy dressing as their favorite character, and singing along with the movie. It is also liberating to wear something fun in a different environment. Patrons are encouraged to yell as much as they want during the movie. Nowhere else on earth can you do these things in a movie theatre and get a laugh instead of a boot out the door. All types of people are accepted at Rocky not for what they are but WHO they are. It is commonly called the “Friends of the Friendless”, because Rocky can bring people out of the woodwork that otherwise would not go out. Rocky provides an understanding of diversity and we work together to achieve a satisfying show for all who see it. It also gives the insomniacs something to do and keeps a lot of kids with troubled homes off of drugs or the streets and into something positive and fun.
This cast has been around so long and is one of the best because not only do all of us work hard to make our show the best, but because we are all family; we believe in what we are doing and in each other. We love what we do and we work together willingly to create the best possible show for the sheer love of Rocky and what it has done for so many people. Consistently, we see whole families at shows, doing the Time Warp. People in Rocky somehow attract each other, and they come back time after time to be together. Los Bastardos has seen babies baptized during dinner scene, three proposals of marriage, and 2-month olds in Columbia outfits. We also do charity work to help those in need by donating portions of out profits to charities and children’s organizations. The day the TABC shut us down at the Ridgmar, we had recently kicked off a fundraiser, “Bring a Bastard a Book”, which was a book drive to needy families during the holiday season. Los Bastardos also raised money for the Red Cross during the Hurricane Katrina aftermath, and donates to the Lena Pope Home and Orphanage in Fort Worth. So despite what you might have heard, not all Rocky casts are evil.
Breakdown: What goes on during our show?
At a special show (one that is away from our home theatre) we will need time to set up and become familiar our new performance space. We then set up props, costumes, all technical equipment (including our cast spotlights, light and soundboard, and several thousand dollars worth of DJ and other technical equipment), and otherwise prepare for the rest of the evening.
The Show begins with Pre-Show: This begins after all patrons have had time to comfortably situate themselves in the theatre. There are rules and regulations that we go over with the audience so that there are no questions to what they can and cannot do while they are in the theatre:
- Rule #1: State of disclaimer: Our show is NOT for everyone; Rocky is not a children’s show and if you are easily offended by language and innuendoes you may not enjoy it and should reconsider viewing it.
- Rule #2: There shall be no smoking allowed in the theatre.
- Rule #3: There shall be no illegal drugs allowed in the theatre.
- Rule #4: Do not come past the front row of the theatre unless asked to do so, for your safety and the cast’s safety.
- Rule #5: No large water guns, super soakers, or other water devices.
- Rule #6: Stay out of the aisles during the show.
- Rule #7: Do not throw things at the Cast, Security, Tech, the Tank, or the Screen, all of which are worth more than your life.
- Rule #8: Do not throw rice, confetti, small torn up pieces of paper, or anything else small and difficult to clean up.
- Rule #9 Rule #69: When the time comes, you will get out of your seat and into the aisles and we will do the Time Warp… again.
Anything the event staff personnel wish to add to the list is also addressed at this time. For example, when the Ridgmar served alcohol, which had to be out by 1:45 a.m., we made announcements that all alcoholic beverages and containers must be passed to the aisles for disposal at that time.
As well as reading the rules, we might sing Rocky Horror songs, have a short skit, or something of that nature. The Pre-Show itself lasts approximately 30 minutes.
The Show Itself: Four Components…
- The Film: The original film plays the entire time.
- The Live Cast and Tech: The cast is a screen-accurate representation of the characters on the screen (a.k.a. shadow cast). They mimic the characters in gesture, costume, and voice. The more accurate and more attractive the cast is, the more audience you pull.
- Floorwalkers and Screamers: There are people called call back lines to the movie on the screen and the screen answers in time. Such as, when Brad and Janet are at the castle door and Riff-Raff answers the door, the Floorwalker calls out, “Say hello, Riff!” to which the character Riff-Raff on the screen and on the cast say, “Hello… ”. Then, the Floorwalker immediately retorts “… I love you, won’t you tell me your name?” singing in the style of the Doors. And on it goes.
- Audience Participation: The audience also calls these lines out with the floorwalkers. They participate in the Pre-Show, sing and dance to the songs in the movie, and a lot of times have Prop Packs. Prop Packs are the packages the cast sells before the show that is commonly called a “Survival Kit”. It contains certain things that the characters use, and the audience mimics the characters with these items alongside the cast. For example, when Janet is going through the woods and it is raining, she holds a newspaper above her head. The audience will dig into their prop packs, pull out the sheet of newspaper, and put it over their heads to shield themselves from the “rain”. They will also pull out noisemakers for the Time Warp, gloves for Creation scene, and toast for the toast, etc..
Post-Show: After the show is finished and the audience exits, the cast collects and puts away all props and equipment. They then clean up the performance area and messes made by the audience. After that, it is good-bye until next time.
Damages due to Rocky Horror:
Many years ago, “horror” stories arose, claiming that Rocky casts or audience members have damaged the theatre in some way, ripped screens, or left a mess in the theatre after the show. Los Bastardos wishes to address this and say that these actions were years ago, most date far back to the latter parts of the 70’s and some in the 80’s. However, Rocky is no longer a place where anarchy is the idea and destroying the theatre is “fun”. It is much more professional and cost-conscious. This is now a perfect way to ruin a cast’s reputation and get kicked out of the theatre. Los Bastardos’ ideal has always been to consistently improve ourselves and our show while making a profit for the theatre, and at every place we have performed, this has happened. If the theatre is happy, we stay and perform what we love to perform, it is as simple as that. We would also like to note that in the many years that Los Bastardos has been running, there has never been an incident to our knowledge concerning destruction of theatre property, vandalism, theft, or anything else while we were on the premises. There are rules we address so that these things do not have the option of arising. We also clean up the theatre after a show and put away props, leaving the theatre in the exact condition that it was before (and most times a bit cleaner).
The members of Los Bastardos are respectful of theatre management and have gotten along well with all managers we have worked with. Applicants are screened both by the director and the rest of the cast before they are considered for membership. The cast itself has an extensive list of rules and regulations that they MUST read, sign, and return to the director before they are accepted onto this cast.
Like our cast rules, we consider our venue’s preservation a matter of utmost importance. We are well aware how expensive and delicate screens, walls, sound equipment, and all other pieces of the property are. We bring SEVERAL THOUSAND DOLLARS worth of props and electrical/technical/DJ equipment to each show, and we in no way wish to damage any of our things nor any of the theatre’s things. As previously noted, damaging the venue is the quickest way to get kicked out and that is the LAST thing we want.
Things to be Aware of:
This show, although extremely popular, is not a show for everyone. The show that Rocky was 20 years ago is not the same show today, and over the years new lines have been added that might offend people that are more conservative. We encourage parents to attend the show first and then decide whether or not they would like to bring their children. The movie itself has a rating of “R”, and our show does reflect some language and sexual innuendos (meant for showmanship ONLY) that conservative individuals may not like to hear. There have been occasional complaints by some individuals concerning our show, but most of these people have either A) Not seen Rocky in 20 years, or B) Have never seen it, with or without a live cast. But, there are those people that are just going to complain because they can, as some people at a movie theatre tend to do. Also, at times some people do end up taking things much too seriously. Rocky Horror is meant as a place to be expressive within a safe and fun environment, but more the more conservative crowd sometimes just do not understand “Rocky people”.
We also employ a security team in order to prevent interference with the theatre management’s duties and prevent taking up their time with petty problems. For example, sometimes an audience member gets a bit fresh with one of the ladies on cast, and security asks them to be more respectful or leave. There have also been a couple of incidences in the past where an audience member has tried to pick fights with the cast or with other patrons. This has never worked very well for those who have caused the problems. At the Ridgmar a couple of years ago, an intoxicated man called the Police Department, and threatened to sue us for talking to his son’s girlfriend. It ended up that the Police threw HIM and his son out for causing problems. That is the closest we have ever come to disturbances. There was often an off-duty officer around for our performances at the Forum, and we had an officer present at the Ridgmar as well. No authorities have ever suggested that we were out of line in any form. Our security has always taken care of problems in a professional manner, and if the individual(s) cannot be consoled that is the time when we will consult the theatre.
What the theatre provides:
We are a fully functioning professional cast. There are very few things that we require of those who wish to hire us for a show:
- Contact their film distributor and obtain a print of the film.
- Sell all tickets and collect money from the show.
- Sell all concession stand items.
- Start the print.
- Provide a venue for the show and allow adequate time to set up our props and tech equipment.
- Allow time after the show for Clean-Up and to put away our props.
There are 200 plus casts in the world running Rocky Horror. We will guarantee you that if you give Rocky a chance, we will create a new tradition for your organization and show your people the time of their lives.
The Rocky Horror History and Tradition – A Brief Overview
Back in 1972, Rocky Horror was dreamed up and written by actor/writer Richard O’Brien, who had grown so tired of trying to find the perfect B-movie horror flick that he just wrote his own. In June of 1973, O’Brien’s tale, now a musical titled The Rocky Horror Show, debuted in London and was a smashing success. Less than a year after its stage opening, American producer/director Lou Adler secured 20th Century Fox as backing for a movie version.
Now The Rocky Horror PICTURE Show, a number of young stars were cast for the film: Tim Curry as Dr. Frank-n-Furter, Barry Bostwick as Brad Majors, Susan Sarandon as Janet Weiss, and ever-popular Meatloaf as Eddie. Despite all hopes, opening September 26, 1975 in Los Angeles, the film did not do nearly so well as the stage show. After only six brief weeks, the theatre closed its doors on Rocky.
In the meantime, however, New York’s Waverly theatre discovered something intriguing: although attendance was low, the figures were stable. Upon further examination, they were surprised to discover these “stable” figures were the same people returning week after week, singing along with the film, dancing to the songs in the aisles, and mimicking the actors on the screen. Management decided the best way to recover losses and not scare away the “conservative” movie crowd was to turn Rocky into a weekly Saturday Midnight show. On April 1, 1976, cult classic The Rocky Horror Picture Show as the world now knows it was born. Costumed patrons filled the theatre for the debut, and the first “Screamer Lines” were coined soon thereafter. Eventually, the “mimickers” turned into a cast, and each year audience numbers continue to rise.
Ever since, Rocky Horror has gained in strength, number, and variety. Rocky’s popularity is due to the variety of the casts and audience: varying ages, occupations, and lifestyles are common, from professors to blue-collar workers, 50-somethings to teens. Many express that Rocky is a symbol of liberation and escape from societal norms, and is a place to be accepted no matter what your lifestyle. In today’s world, Rocky has taken on a life of its own, with distinctive rules, traditions, and culture. Fan base increases year after year, as do the profits. In 1996, 20th Century Fox remastered and released 30 new prints of Rocky Horror, and as of late 2002, profits were in excess of $150 million dollars. One 20th Century Fox representative noted, “I think that Rocky Horror is the single best investment this studio ever made.”
With the wrong Rocky cast, stories of the past have been at the very least crazy and at times downright shameful. But with a professional cast like Los Bastardos, the experience you can have will be one that is unforgettable and fun. Thank you for taking the time to read through this, and consider us for your next event. Please email us at Losbastaradoscast@gmail.com with any questions or concerns, we will be happy to discuss potential shows with you and your organization!