Originally meant to post this in October . . .
Since I didn’t, here is a wonderful compliment I received from Dori Hartley . . . whom many of us know from her infamy of being the first ‘Frank N. Furter’ when Rocky Horror Picture Show was becoming a cult classic back in the late 70s, early 80s in New York City — and in the United States.
If you pick up, or find a copy of a book called CREATURES OF THE NIGHT by Sal Piro, you will find her story and many others. Afterwards, if you find a copy of CREATURES OF THE NIGHT II by Sal Piro; well, you’ll find my photograph(s) and a little about me, the infamous, Curry’s Angel.
Of course, since I wasn’t the first or never became a regular ‘Frank N. Furter’ at the actual 8th Street Playhouse — my fame is fading some. Nevertheless, I’ve had some years of what I call Rocky Horror fame. As you read the article below, about me and my association with Rocky Horror and all that entails — you will see my wish was “to be the next Dori Hartley“. In many ways it came true and ran full circle.
Besides getting to meet Dori, a few times (at RHPS conventions); in the past few years, via facebook and the RHPS family we all formed, I am happy she calls me a friend. We are not the best of friends [in the sense of knowing each other extremely well], or have we ever chatted, in person, for hours, or on the phone (as friends would do) — nevertheless, we have exchanged private emails and via facebook and, I believe, if we do, or had opportunity to hang out or chat on the phone, it would be for hours! It would also be fun, informative and really interesting!
Yet, we are quite sympatico and deep inside, I know, we understand one another as much as two, very unique women of similar age can. We are, for lack of a better word, contemporaries. We’ve had some common experiences, both of us have strong opinions [on which we agree, and many we would not agree], yet, respect each other enough to live and let live on things of which we’d, no doubt, disagree.
Also, like Dori, I did meet Tim Curry, as was also my goal.
Here is her wonderful note to me [I vote it the best compliment of 2010, and perhaps of the whole decade, so far!]. If nothing else, as noted in her note, Dori gets me, even when she doesn’t!
Angela – You’re an original and I’m pretty sure you’ve taken your share of guff in your time.
I love your spirit and your independence. You’re as mad as a hatter and I have to let you know that I am YOUR fan – for your originality, your ability to stick with what YOU believe, and your ‘oh yeah? you think I care?’ attitude.
I totally respect you because you are uniquely you, all the time.
And Dori, I am your fan . . . for sure!
Now, my story:
The Story of “Curry’s Angel“
It Was Great When It All Began
A long, long time ago (1979) in a galaxy far, far away (Phoenix, Arizona) my journey into Rocky Horror began, and almost ended at the same time! Being the 16-year-old Christian child that I was, I expected a fun film where we teenagers, who enjoyed acting, were able to do so. What I found was underage teens emulating sexual behavior, cursing like truck-drivers and men dressing like women! I was afraid to go to the bathroom because my two escorts, two other teen girls and their mothers, told me “don’t go to the bathroom because there is only one!” At the time, not really realizing that most of the guys wouldn’t even care if they saw me (or any other women) naked – thoughts of rape and molestation ran through my mind. My moral, Christian upbringing was being shaken at the foundation. In the next month, having seen the film Footloose, no doubt; I talked about starting a petition against The Rocky Horror Picture Show. I didn’t try very hard, but I told a couple teachers that it was immoral and should be banned! Little did I know what would happen two short years later…
At the age of 18, my mind was opened up… a lot. I was finding my chosen faith of Born Again Christianity much too limiting. My beliefs left no place in God’s world for my Jewish friends, my homosexual friends and my friends raised without organized religion. So, I asked the same friend, Traci Dubow, who escorted me in 1979, if she’d be willing to re-initiate the new me into the R.H.P.S.
That fateful night I fell in… love (or is it lust) with, as I put it, “that man in the fishnets and corset” and wanted to be part of it all. I was obsessed, trying to find every book written on the film and on Tim Curry – and I found them everywhere! In that same year, I read Sal Piro’s Creatures of the Night and read about Dori Hartley. I told all my new Rocky Horror friends that “Angela Theresa Egic is going to be the next Dori Hartley of Rocky Horror!” This was also around the year I was officially titled “Curry’s Angel“.
Since I am an actress, my first cast in Arizona was pretty impressed with my virgin performance at Rocky Horror and invited me back for the next week to audition to be a permanent Janet. I did that and then the cast was fired! I took over and began a cast of volunteer audience members. We had no costumes and most of us were still new to the film, but we all acted and performed our hearts out. Admittedly I was getting them into shape and we were doing pretty well for our inexperience… then BOOM!! Some big guy showed up, with entourage in tow. He had been doing the R.H. circuit for several years and he took over. He made me the understudy Magenta, Janet and a real occasional Columbia. But he did let me in the show free for the next year as a cast member. His name was Max Medina and his wife who became the regular Janet, also named Angela. To keep confusion down I began signing our cast list as The Next Mrs. Curry. Max was constantly telling me I wasn’t a true R.H. fan, but a Tim Curry fan. One night, Max, frustrated at my endless “Curry lines” during the film, shouted at me.”Angela! Who do you think you are, Tim Curry’s angel or something?!!” (I’d like to note this was before angels became all the rage, too).I responded, “Yeah, Max, I am his angel! That’s why my mother named me Angela!!”Soon after two other cast members and I began our 70’s tribute as “Curry’s Angels” with us two Angela’s and our Columbia – I was Jaclyn Shit, then the other Angela, with the hair was Farrah Fucked Up and Kate Jackass. I kept the “Curry’s Angel” name, obviously. I was the biggest Tim Curry fan of our group!
And that’s how I became Curry’s Angel in 1983 – which leads me back to my becoming the next Dori Hartley. The ways I most wanted to be like Dori was to become famous in the R.H. circuit and to actually know Tim Curry!! At this time I didn’t have the “balls” to consider even playing “Frank N. Furter” in a cast. I was pretty content with Janet and Magenta.Thus, the first thing I did on my road to R.H. fame was to write the fan club president, Sal Piro. I ordered a “Tim Curry Fearless shirt” and wrote him a note of how much I adore Tim Curry and the show. He wrote me back!! Little “Curry’s Angel” got a little from someone Dori Hartley was close friends with!!! Sal told me the medium t-shirt I ordered was gone and he only had a small one left… did I want it? I said “Yes” even though I like my shirts big.
The next few years many things happened.
Most importantly, in 1984, I was accepted to The American Academy of Dramatic Arts (AADA) in New York City.
I arrived in NY on October 12, 1984, only two weeks after my 21st birthday. My goals: to go to 8th Street Playhouse, meet and become friends with Sal Piro, join the cast and meet Tim Curry and become friends with him too! This, or course, would make me quite famous in the R.H. community!
My first visit to the 8th Street Playhouse was rather interesting, a whole different crowd from the Phoenix group. Met Sal before the show and asked about being in the cast, he said he did need a female Magenta. Culture shock city for me! But I had yet to get together a full costume, and that was an 8th Street requirement. By the time I got things together Sal had a full cast and didn’t seem too interested in either knowing me or casting me. I was this annoying Tim Curry fan always sitting in the third row trying to out-scream the resident 8th Street cast Tim fanatic, Michelle Rehfeld.
I boasted to everyone there how I was going to know Tim Curry and he was going to know me. They all thought I was just another young, fly-by-night, Rocky Horror fan, never to be seen again. But this Girl from Arizona who called herself Curry’s Angel never went away! Eventually, I became a regular audience member of 8th Street, and as much as I annoyed a lot of the cast, I slowly began to fit it. They stopped calling me “the Girl from Arizona” and started to accept that I was indeed “Curry’s Angel“.
Later, living in Brooklyn… there was a theatre, The Marlboro, which showed R.H.P.S. on Saturday midnights only. I approached the manager of that theater and several of the 8th Street regulars and asked if we could be the resident cast of Brooklyn. The manager agreed and gave us a date that we could try it out. And as true and dedicated fans of the 8th Street cast, we still went into NYC on Friday nights, and for anniversaries. Our show was only on Saturday nights.
In the two or three years that the show was in Brooklyn, several of our cast members became 8th Street regulars. In fact, some of our originally Brooklyn cast are still involved with the fan club and the NYC Cast!
To make a long story short (too late)… On August 28, 1987 at about 6:00 p.m., in New York City – I met Tim Curry! He [Tim Curry] was in rehearsal for the Broadway touring cast of Me and My Girl. I tracked him down through my friend who worked in “the Broadway Circuit” and met him…by myself, and I made quite an impression! It would take several more pages to explain what happened with me and Tim and why, to this day, he knows me by name and calls me his angel when we do see each other. The interesting part, Tim and I never discussed R.H.P.S. the whole 20 minutes we chatted during that first meeting. It just didn’t come up.
I retired a couple of weeks after the meeting. In 1992, I volunteered to use my years of RHPS experience to do a column, in a now defunct fanzine by Mad Man Mike called When Madness Takes Its Toll. When Mike decided to end his fanzine I started my own [now defunct]. I premiered it at the “1993 Mini-Con” in Washington, DC. I titled mine The Unconventional Conventionalists R.H. Newsletter.
Since 1992, I’ve been in full retirement from the performing aspect of the RHPS. I’ve attended many RHPS conventions and seen Mr. Curry several more times through the years. In fact, I’ve met, sometimes hung out, with a lot of the original film cast of RHPS.
And Sal Piro has had me involved in some convention and a Halloween TV special on cable! I’ve also appeared as “Curry’s Angel” at the 10th Anniversary in NYC and the 15th Anniversary in Los Angeles.
In 2008, via a friend in Hollywood, CA, I also had the pleasure of meeting the original “Trixie/Magenta” from the Broadway Roxy cast of Rocky Horror Show; the lovely Jamie Donnelly!
Currently, I live in New York doing stage acting and still pursuing a career as a Broadway actor/singer and writer. I am working on my first book about developing your psychic gifts; I also work as an Intuitive/Medium.
Comments also welcome here! Keep reading as I will have updates about my books, my intuitive work and my stage work.
Happy New Year!
Love, Light & Laughter,