BACK for what has become its annual visit to Eden Court this weeknd, rock and gore musical Vampires Rock is celebrating its 10th anniversary year.
Since its debut at the Majestic Theatre, Retford in October 2003 — pre-dating fellow vampiric hits Twilight and True Blood — Vampires Rock has become one of the most successful touring theatre shows in the UK.
Show originator and star Steve Steinman takes the lead role of Baron Von Rockula, whose quest for a new bride is set against a horde of hits by acts such as Guns n Roses, Bon Jovi, AC/DC, Meat Loaf, Queen and many more.
These familiar rock anthems are one of the secrets of the show’s success, Steinman reckons.
"The problem with a lot of musicals is that you have to see them a few times before you know the songs and can sing along, but the singing along is the fun part," Steinman said.
"I wanted to create something where you could come to the show and be part of it from the very first time."
Another element in its continued success, he believes, is the way the show has continued to evolve year after year.
"When we started out the show was great, but it was a bit smaller than it is now," he commented.
"Over the years we’ve added more dancers, more costumes, more pyrotechnics, we’ve introduced fire dancing and we recently added a silk dancing routine as well. And we always keep the tours fresh by changing some of the songs that feature.
"Of course there’s some that’ll never be missed out — I don’t think we’d ever get away with not doing Bat Out of Hell, the fans wouldn’t stand for that!"
With over a million ticket sales to date, the show has attracted some famous names in its time.
In 2007 Eddie Ojeda of hit rock band Twisted Sister played guitar in the show.
He was followed by Toyah Wilcox, who toured in the show for two years as the Devil Queen, the long suffering wife of Baron Von Rockula. "Toyah wanted to be in the show but there wasn’t a suitable character for her to play so we wrote one specially," Steinman revealed.
"Toyah was great; she introduced the show to a new audience. I remember in one of our first meetings we were discussing what type of costumes we would design for her and she said: ‘Oh don’t worry, darling, I’ve got the perfect thing in my wardrobe already.’
"That was Toyah, she was made to be in a show like this."
• Vampires Rock: The 10th Anniversary Tour, is at The Empire Theatre, Inverness, on Friday 22nd November at 8pm.