‘Rockin’ Horribles’ Returns to Rust Belt with New Faces

YOUNGSTOWN – “The Rockin’ Horribles” generated so much buzz when it premiered last year that Rust Belt Theater Co. is bringing it back for Round 2.

The sophomore version of the musical comedy – which may or may not bear a strong if not spoofy resemblance to another “Rocky” show – features a mostly new cast this year but the same raucous spirit.

“This was our biggest new hit in 2018, so we decided to bring it back to cap off our Halloween festivities,” says Robert Dennick Joki, director. The show opens Friday and runs for three weekends.

“Horribles” was written by the musical theater writing team of Joki (script, lyrics) and Josh Taylor (music), who have already produced several of their original shows, including “Serial Monogamy,” “Living Dead,” “Dating Sucks” and “Godiva.”

Audiences may recognize the plot and characters – and their similarities to that other risqué Halloween-season show that encourages audiences to become part of the fun by shouting out comments at certain moments.

After crashing their car in a bad Youngstown neighborhood, Chad and Becky – a young and very normal couple – seek refuge in the home of Dr. Hauten Daugen, an eccentric recluse who has a very unusual fetish. 

With the assistance of the recluse’s creepy cohorts Jib Jab, Fuchsia and Columbiana, the recently engaged couple tests the boundaries of their traditional relationship. The result is a show full of dark comedy and “rocking” horror.

The cast includes Wesley Miller, returning as Dr. Hauten Daugen, and Jude Mikulich, returning as Chad, plus Brooke Nobbs, Kage Coven, Lisa Torrence, Geri Dewitt, Keith Ian, Erik Glasgow, Martin Daniels, Daniele Kiraly, Heather Powell, Janelle Yohman, Alicia Royer and Mary James.

“We have a lot of new performers this year,” says Joki. “I am especially excited to work with Danielle Kiraly, known locally as DJ Dani.  I’ve been trying to get her on my stage for quite some time.”

Nobbs will be taking over the role of Becky, which was originally written with her in mind, says Joki. 

“Sometimes I write roles with certain people in mind, but they don’t get to perform them because of scheduling conflicts,” he explains. “It’s always nice when they are eventually able to do them.” 

 “The Rockin’ Horribles” will be performed at 8 p.m. Nov. 1, 2, 8, 9, 15 and 16 at Calvin Center, 755 Mahoning Ave.

Tickets are $15 ($10 for students and senior citizens). Audience participation bags will be sold at the door for a small fee. For reservations, call 330 507 2358. The show is rated R for adult language and situations.

Pictured: Jude Mikulich and Brooke Nobbs star in Rust Belt Theater’s “The Rockin’ Horribles.”

Copyright 2022 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.