SAASHA Halloween Flyer in the Colman Lobby. Photo by Adam Fleischer.
Lawrence’s student organizations will host a variety of events during the last weekend of October to celebrate the Halloween season.
Prescribed Escape Productions (PEP), Lawrence’s independent, student-run theater company, will be staging three performances of Rocky Horror Picture Show on Saturday, Oct. 29. The first show will take place at 12:01 a.m. on the night between Friday and Saturday, while the other shows are on Saturday at 8 p.m. and 11:59 p.m.
Junior Zhanna Weil, who will star as the mad scientist Dr. Frank-N-Furter, has been involved in Rocky Horror at Lawrence since their freshman year and said that she is extremely excited to continue the tradition.
“I’ve done Rocky so many times that it’s in my blood,” Weil said. “I eat, sleep and breathe this movie. I can do these dance sequences in my sleep.”
The performance is centered around the 1975 cult classic film by Richard O’Brien, which tells the fantastical story of a young couple who wander into Dr. Frank-N-Furter’s mansion of horrors. While the film plays on a large screen in the auditorium, an audio track of bawdy call lines interjects with the original sound, creating rowdy banter. Live performers lip-sync along with the call lines and mimic the dancing numbers from the movie.
Weil, who is also the costumer and vice president of PEP, serves on an 8-member consent team to ensure that the performers and audience are safe and empowered during the production. She aims to create an accepting space for the queer community, artists and people experimenting with different forms of self-expression.
“Rocky is just a place where you can be aggressively yourself,” Weil said.
Two of the other performers, senior Raidah Binthe and sophomore Lauren Dahl, will be performing in Rocky Horror Picture Show for the first time.
Binthe praised the production team for creating a welcoming environment and stated that the Rocky Horror set is the safest space they have found on campus. They also emphasized the significance of Rocky Horror in the queer community.
“It’s quite radical for the time that it was made,” Binthe said. “It’s trans-friendly and it embraces all kinds of sexualities.”
Dahl decided to audition for Rocky Horror because she enjoyed watching last year’s production. While she acknowledged that the show is shamelessly raunchy, she hopes that people will feel more empowered and confident after watching the performance. She also mentioned that it’s a tradition for audience members to wear risqué costumes to the show.
“Be weird,” Dahl said. “We’re all up there embarrassing ourselves in front of people, and I hope people learn to let go when they come.”
PEP will not be the only student organization hosting events for Halloween. The Student Alliance Against Sexual Harassment and Assault (SAASHA) will be hosting its annual Halloween party on Friday, Oct. 28 from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. in the basement of Art House. The event will feature a costume contest, candy, and a Polaroid station where guests can take pictures of their costumes.
SAASHA chair Tee Karki, a senior, hopes that the party will boost engagement for SAASHA and provide a judgment-free environment to learn more about consent, safe sex and contraception.
She also emphasized that SAASHA events are open to the entire Lawrence community and anyone is welcome to join or attend! She hopes that the Halloween party will encourage people from all backgrounds to find out more about SAASHA.
“I think there’s this misconception on campus that SAASHA is this private space that is only for survivors, but SAASHA is a safe space for anyone,” Karki said.
The Sustainable Lawrence University Garden (SLUG) and the Student Organization for University Programming (SOUP) will collaborate for Cornival, a harvest festival centered around corn, on Saturday, Oct. 29 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. The event is planned to take place in the Quad and around SLUG House, weather permitting.
Junior Will Brenneman, SLUG’s Hoop House director, said that the event will feature a potluck, games, pumpkin carving, pumpkin smashing, bobbing for corn, grilling corn, food and drink.
“It will be a huge celebration of food, SLUG and all the fun things we’re doing at Lawrence,” Brenneman said.
Sophomore Matthew Dalgleish, who serves as outreach director for SLUG, said that SLUG has been planning the event since the beginning of the term. He hopes that the event will help create a greater sense of community.
“I want people to have a good time and enjoy friends and family,” said Dalgleish.