MARION — Vinny Segretario has dreamed of bringing the cult classic “Rocky Horror Picture Show” to life in Southern Illinois for a long time. This year, he decided to take the risk and he’s found it to be a learning experience.

“I know the show better than anyone I know in Southern Illinois, so I just decided to do it,” said Segretario, a senior at Marion High School. “It’s taken a mental and physical toll on me. It’s really tough, honestly. It’s been more difficult than I thought.”

But when the final production hits the stage at the Marion Cultural and Civic Center this weekend, he knows he’ll have accomplished a major goal. The musical runs at 7 p.m. and midnight Friday and Saturday, Nov. 2-3. Tickets are $12 and can be purchased at or at the door.

“Now that I’m seeing my vision come to life, it’s pretty amazing,” Segretario said. “It’s pretty amazing. I’m ready for the show.”

The rock musical follows the same story as the 1975 film that inspired it. A newly engaged couple travel to break the news to their friends, but end up lost at a mysterious and creepy mansion filled with interesting characters instead.

Under costume designer Steven Shockley, the outfits for the characters have been slightly modernized but not enough to take away from the story. Fans will still be seeing “the biggest, baddest rock and roll part of them all,” Segretario said.

One of the hardest parts of producing “Rocky Horror” comes from the tradition of the show. The movie became a cult phenomenon and has one of the most rabid fan bases of all time.

“A lot of people know the show and they look for a certain style,” said music director Derek Hamblin, who also plays Riff Raff in the show. “You have to live up to what everyone expects to see and add your own little things to it.”

The experience is also different from watching the movie version, Hamblin said. The orchestra is situated eight feet above the stage, decorated with an elaborate set, and audience members can openly cheer, jeer and interact with actors on stage.

“It’s the cult classic live on stage,” he said. “That’s really all I can say. It’s not done live very often, especially in Southern Illinois.”


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