Alhambra Theatre to host Halloween-themed double feature

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Alhambra Theatre and Dining in Jacksonville has been putting on shows for 54 years, but they continue to look for new productions and unique ways to keep audiences entertained.

The latest of which will be the productions of “Young Frankenstein The Musical” and “The Rocky Horror Show” that will be hitting the stage throughout October.

“It’s fun because both shows are brand new at the Alhambra,” Alhambra production manager Shain Stroff said. “Our audiences really want to see new material.”

“Young Frankenstein The Musical” is based on the 1974 film directed by Mel Brooks. It is scheduled to begin Thursday, Sept. 30, and will run through Nov. 7, starting at 7:50 p.m. with additional 1 p.m. matinees on weekends.

“Mel Brooks shows are known to be very musical and funny,” Stroff said. “Any Mel Brooks show is going to be really big.”

“The Rocky Horror Show” will serve as a double feature for audiences craving a taste of Halloween and will be performed Oct. 15-16, Oct. 22-23 and Oct. 28-30 with all shows beginning at 11 p.m.

It derives from the 1975 film, and the stage production will also include the fan-involved elements that made the film so iconic.

The interaction will be more than most musical, and Stroff had that in mind when he was auditioning and choosing a cast for the play.

“Everybody I’ve hired has been trained with improvisation,” Stroff said. “You’re going to have to roll with the punches.”

Although both “Young Frankenstein The Musical” and “The Rocky Horror Show” will be shown on certain nights, they require separate ticket purchases to attend.

Tickets for “Young Frankenstein The Musical” are $48 and will include the traditional three-course meal the Alhambra has become famous for, as well as complimentary parking.

According to Stroff, “The Rocky Horror Show” sold out within 48 hours of being available to the public.

“There’s been a high demand,” Stroff said.

Two casts will be used for “Young Frankenstein” and the same will be in place for “The Rocky Horror Show.”

However, 18 performers will make up the “Young Frankenstein” production, while 10 will be used for “The Rocky Horror Show,” with several performing in both shows.

Preparing for a double feature is a unique and challenging venture, as they only had five days to learn each show’s script and choreography.

Stroff and all those involved have embraced the challenges of producing and performing two shows in such a short period of time as a great opportunity.

“A lot of us have been pulling about 16-hour days (during rehearsals),” Stroff said.

Much of the talent was chosen from the local area, which Stroff believes is the way it should be.

“For me, as a production manager, it’s very important to scout and use the talent locally,” Stroff said.

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