Half a century ago The Rocky Horror Show was first unveiled in London, and since then its continued to be a cult hit for both young and old.
Now creator and mastermind, Richard O’Brien, is about to premier his new show Kingdom of Bling with a cast of talented students from two schools that the 81-year-old attended as a pupil.
“The Kingdom of Bling is a satirical fairytale using the political situation in America as a basis for the whole sha-bang,” he said.
Students from Tauranga Boys’ College and Tauranga Primary make up the cast with Richard O’Brien narrating in his signature way.
“A glimmering, shimmering not much of fun thing,” he quipped.
Students Ollie Farquharson and Jack Muir, who have main roles in the play, say there’s some pressure performing in front of a global superstar, and they’re inspired by The Rocky Horror Show.
“It’s quite out there, which I think is pretty cool though,” Ollie said.
“It’s a real statement of who Richard is and it’s cool to work with someone like that,” said Jack.
The show opens at the weekend and any profits will go to Starship.
Richard O’Brien has also gifted the rights to the piece to the children’s hospital, and hopes it’s turned into an animated movie.
During his time as a presenter on the Crystal Maze, the star said he received thousands of letters from families and patients whose children were in hospital.
He said because of his “bald head” the children were told “you’re like the chap off Crystal Maze”.
During the interview with 1News Richard O’Brien became emotional recalling a visit to Bristol to see a young boy who died a few weeks later.
Wiping away tears he said the strength of parents was moving: “When a child dies on the ward” everybody is affected, he said.
He’s also deeply concerned about the state of play in American politics, and the void in kindness it creates.