BY SARAH VENTRE
I have to admit, in a quiet, whispered voice, that I actually don't like Halloween. Trust me, I've tried. I've had no traumatic experiences around the event, or anything that should conceivably prevent me from enjoying the holiday that everyone else so loves. Sure, there are qualities about the eve that I respect, or perhaps even admire. It's a day when it is socially acceptable for adults to act like children. We're allowed to dress up, paint our faces, and gorge ourselves with chocolate. We are expected to drink in excess, while on other days, this is often frowned upon by the masses. Yet for myself, and perhaps only three others in the U.S., it is a day that leaves us feeling empty. We are left to contemplate the mass consumer nature of the day once intended to celebrate the harvest and remember the dead, and the need for excuses to feel youthful.
It has been my decision then to forget about the sexy costumes, the people who need a sanctioned day to act like fools, and those who can only party it up when it is a recognized holiday. Thankfully for me, Frock 'N Roll provided a much needed alternative to the conventional celebrations. The charity fashion show features threads from local designers, and runway music from local bands. This year's event went all out, showcasing the work of a handful of fashionistas, and nearly 15 different acts. The proceeds went to benefit Radio Phoenix, winner of the New Times' prestigious, "Best Online Music Station That Should Be a Radio Station" award.
For each band that played, models strutted out, donning their chic looks and, in a rather untraditional manner, walking in front of and around band members, and even stopping to dance with them. They'd then walk to a makeshift catwalk so the audience could have a better glimpse of the clothes before heading offstage.
The event was held at MADCAP Theaters, (formerly Harkins Centerpoint,) which was evidently also showing a South Indian film in another theater, simultaneously. This made for a rather interesting mingling of the two crowds near the concession stands. Those moviegoers were greeted with the usual Halloween getup, added to well dressed models wearing ghoulish face paint, and everyone drinking tall cans of PBR while waiting for the next band to start.
The show was immediately followed by a midnight screening of the Rocky Horror Picture Show. (Well, by the time it started, it was probably a 2 AM screening.) As the crowd lined up for Rocky, Peachcake, the last band of the evening played in the lobby of the ground floor. Their revival-like antics seemed to confuse even the fans of Rocky Horror, who are creeped out by little to none. (Seriously though, people follow Peachcake like they would a prophetic priest. A friend remarked to me that we should keep a watchful eye in case they started handing out Kool-Aid...)
The night was all around unpretentious, and loads of fun. Even for those of us who don't care for the night much at all.
Better Than: Any other show at a movie theater.
Personal Bias: This show was fun, and successful, and while I was grateful to have it instead of the usual Halloween options, I can't help but think more people would have come if there wasn't so much other competition for attendance.
Random Fact: People won actual frocks as prizes. The one I saw was sheer pink with a checkered edge. Hot.