The All Hallows’ Haunts 2016 Awards

With 2016 almost in the books and 2017 right around the corner, the team here at All Hallows’ Haunts thought it would be fun to look back at what we thought was the best of the best in 2016. So, without further ado, here are the All Hallows’ Haunts 2016 Awards.

Movie

Andy’s Pick- Hush

Lola’s Pick- Train to Busan

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TV Show

Andy’s Pick-  The Exorcist

Lola’s Pick- Stranger Things

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Creepy Album

Andy’s Pick- Metallica- Hardwired To Self-Destruct


Lola’s Pick – Birdeatsbaby- Tanta Furia

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Book

Andy’s Pick- Maggie Goes To Hollywood & Maggie Reloaded by Kate Danley

Lola’s Pick- I’m Thinking of Ending Things by Iain Reid

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Convention

Andy’s Pick- Midsummer Scream 

Lola’s Pick – Midsummer Scream

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Unique Event

Andy’s Pick- Serial Killer Speed Dating

Lola’s Pick- Halloween Club’s 4th Annual Spookshow

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Play

Andy’s Pick- Demonic Housewives

Lola’s Pick – Wicked Lit

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Haunt

Andy’s Pick- Knott’s Scary Farm

Lola’s Pick – Knott’s Scary Farm

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Haunt Show/Attraction

Andy’s Pick- Queen Mary’s Freak Show

Lola’s Pick- Micah Cover’s Haunted House Calls

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Maze

Andy’s Pick- Shadowlands (Knott’s Scary Farm)

Lola’s Pick – Shadow Lands (Knott’s Scary Farm)

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Scare Zone

Andy’s Pick- The Hollows (Knott’s Scary Farm) 

Lola’s Pick – Fiesta de los Muertos

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Urban Death: Tour of Terror 2016

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As many of you  may already know, I have an intimate relationship with Urban Death. I’ve experienced it from all perspectives, I’ve been a fan, I’ve been a performer, I’ve loved it dearly, and I’ve even bled for it. With that being said, I’ll try to keep this review as objective as possible.

The standard Urban Death is a one hour show, full of silent vignettes of terror. Actors that look like they’ve been plucked out of The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari shock the audience with graphic scenes of violence and existential dread.

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Urban Death: Tour of Terror changes things up a bit for Halloween. The theater is transformed into a maze and the show is shortened to about 15 minutes. Audiences must walk through the maze to see the show. On the way out they go back through the maze, which has changed entirely during the show.

I’m not a huge fan of the maze. As both a performer and audience member, I think it’s too dark. I like the darkness, but I couldn’t see the characters at all. If they brightened it up just a tad, it’d be much more enjoyable. My companion disagreed with me. He liked the level of darkness. What I did see, was creepy to the core. My favorite part of the maze involves some sort of creature with  long fingers caressing herself.

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This year’s show was one of my favorites ever. Urban Death is at its best when it focuses on creating illusions and psychological horror. Everything you ever imagined lurking in the infinite blackness, resides within the confines of Urban Death.

Those intrigued by this article should visit the official ZJU website and check out the upcoming shows. Also check out the Urban Death site. http://zombiejoes.com/ and http://www.urbandeath.com/

 

 

 

Urban Death Returns To Zombie Joe’s Underground

(Postcard by Zombie Joe)

Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre Group proudly presents the return of their annual marquee event- Urban Death. For those unfamiliar with this modern Grand Guignol, Urban Death is a vignette show, featuring scenes of dark, twisted horror, death, and nightmares. Urban Death is unlike any show you have seen and should not be missed.

Per their official press release, Zombie Joe describes Urban Death as:

Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre Group’s signature horror production that dives deep into the depths of ALL-NEW inexplicable horrors, unfathomable monstrosities, and the disturbed spirits that walk among us! 

 Returning to helm this year’s Urban Death are co-directors Zombie Joe and Jana Wimer.

We are also thrilled to announce that All Hallows’ Haunts’ very own Lola Tarantula will be among the cast of Urban Death.

Urban Death runs Friday and Saturday Nights, April 29th through May 28th, 2016, at 11pm. The show is designed for ages 15 and up!

Tickets are $15 and can be bought at the door or online at ZombieJoes.Tix.com . You can also call the official ZJU reservation hotline at (818) 202-4120.

ZJU Theatre Group, 4850 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood, CA 91601.

This event WILL SELL OUT. It is highly recommended that you buy your tickets early and arrive to the theatre early to get a good seat!

 

Demonic Housewives Is A Home Run!

DH Postcard proof 4(Postcard by Adam Neubauer)

For most theatre and production companies in Los Angeles, they live and die by their first show. Some are a hit, many others, a miss. In the case of Force of Nature Productions world premier of Thomas J. Misuraca’s new play, Demonic Housewives, they didn’t just come out swinging. They hit a Grand Slam!

(Photo by Adam Neubauer)

After the mysterious death of her Aunt Wanda (Lee Quarrie), Darcy (Lara Fisher) and her best friend Rae (Caitlin McCormick) visit the small town of Hobsville to attend to her Aunt’s affairs. What they soon discover is that several of the housewives, led by Millicent (Redetha Deason), are using black magic and summoning demons to keep control over their small town, and eventually, the world. Thus begins a battle for control as Darcy learns to harness her newfound power and goes head to head with Millicent. What ensues is a true battle of good vs. evil.

 (Photo by Adam Neubauer)

This show goes all out from beginning to end. As soon as you walk in to the theatre, you are greeted by the wonderful live music performed by Jennifer Novak Chun and Elif Savas, better known as the “Demonic Duo,” who not only provide live pre-show music, but also provide all the live music and sound effects throughout the show. The addition of a live score adds a nice icing to the already delicious cake.

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The cast, entirely female, is phenomenal, filled with wonderful characters. Redetha Deason is cunning and evil as Millicent, the main antagonist. You love to hate her. Beth Fisher is hilarious as the sweet, but dimwitted Peggy, Millicent’s sidekick. They are joined by Monet Hendricks as Kim, who wants to be good, but is easily manipulated into joining Millicent’s covenant. Opposing them is Lara Fisher as Darcy, Wanda’s niece. She is the total opposite of Millicent. Cunning, with attitude. You want her to win. She is supported by the strong comedic timing of Caitlin McCormick as Rae, Darcy’s best friend. They are supported in their efforts against Millicent by the very funny Lee Quarrie as Wanda, Darcy’s dead aunt and former witch. Filling out the cast are the wonderful Susie Horton, Aubrey Manning, and Anne Westcott as the church choir and providing some fantastic songs and commentary. Each performer creates a unique character that is different and strong.

(Photo by Adam Neubauer)

Giving the actors the tools to work with is the strong and witty script by Thomas J. Miscuraca (@GeeksMusical). It’s an over the top comedy that keeps the laughs coming. The dialogue is sharp and straight to the point; perfect for this style of comedy.

 (Photo by Adam Neubauer)

Taking the reigns as director and producer is Force of Nature Productions founder, Sebastian Munoz (@CiNeMaMaN8). His strengths as a director shine, as he was able to lead this wonderful cast to some amazing performances. Something I’ve observed with all of Sebastian’s shows is his talent and ability to bring a cast together as a family that wants everyone and everything about a show to succeed. It’s inspirational to see that. Supporting Munoz and serving as Assistant Director is Angelia Weitzman. Jahel Corban Caldera serves as Stage Manager.

 (Photo by Adam Neubauer)

This being a horror-comedy, I want to point out that there was one truly scary moment that creeped me out. A scene with Millicent, Peggy, and Kim chanting; the lights a deep red and the music, dark and moody. From where I sat, Millicent, Peggy, and Kim’s eyes seemed to be entirely black. It was incredibly freaky. After the show, I asked them if they were wearing contacts, and they said no. I just happened to be sitting in the right seat at the right time.

 (Photo by Adam Neubauer)

Demonic Housewives is funny, scary, and creepy in all the right ways. There is never a moment where the audience isn’t entertained or bored. The cast is wonderful and having fun. I believe if the cast is having fun, then the audience will have fun. What more could you ask for in a night at the theatre.

Do yourself a favor: go see Demonic Housewives. You will need to hurry  and get your tickets ASAP as the show is selling out fast! Then do yourself another favor. Go on Twitter and Facebook and follow Force of Nature Productions (@fonprods, http://www.fonproductions.com) They have announced that they have a few exciting things in the works coming out over the next few months and they are sure to be amazing!

Demonic Housewives runs Thursday and Sunday evenings, April 14th through May 1st. Performances will be at 8pm Thursdays and 7pm Sundays. Tickets are $20 and can be bought at the door or at www.archwayla.com. Tickets will sell out, so please get them early.

The Archway Studio/Theatre (@ArchwayLA) is located at 10509 Burbank Blvd. North Hollywood, CA 91601

 

Evil Dead The Musical 4D: Devilishly Well-Done

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The gang here at All Hallows’ Haunts caught Evil Dead The Musical 4D at the Tommy Wind Theater during our recent sojourn to the City of Lights.

Adapted from the Sam Raimi film, Evil Dead The Musical 4D, is everything an Evil Dead  fan could want (and for the extreme die hard fans, a whole lot more). All of your favorite characters are there, all of your favorite moments are there. Yes, people get murdered on stage. Yes, it is fake and silly, and ridiculously messy. So, so messy. So 4D. And messy.

You want to be a part of the show? Enjoy the messiness? Buy the VIP tickets. You’ll be treated to a white t-shirt signed by the cast and encouraged to put it on before the show starts so it will be covered in fake blood as the show progresses. Encouraged might be a bit of a misnomer here, as no one opted to not put the shirts on.

To say the show is fun is a complete and total understatement. The cast pitches this show so hard, I thought they might be all vying for the Cy Young Award this year. They especially pay attention to the Splatter Zone, as they know those are the fans that can quote the movie by heart. At one point, an actor just stood on stage, talking to an audience member, continuously spraying her with blood. This must’ve lasted for at least 60 seconds. She loved it. (When they didn’t, the actors would scream at them, “YOU PAID EXTRA FOR THIS”.)

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Even if you’re not a fan of the movie, the live show is worth the price of admission. You don’t need to be drenched in blood to enjoy it, as the show is put together really well. The songs are on note, the actors are fantastic, and everyone is having fun.

If you’re a fan of the movie and like campy theater, I highly recommend seeing the show.

There’s just one caveat. A really, really big caveat.

The Tommy Wind Theater is terrible. It’s not designed to hold a large audience for a show that could garner this much attention. The staff is pleasant, but obviously have no real experience running live shows. Our group showed up at 7:28pm for a 7:30pm show to find out that our VIP seats (yes, we’re those Evil Dead freaks that want to be covered in fake blood) had been sold out from under us. No cast-signed T-shirts. No free show specific shots. No getting covered in gallons of amazingly fake blood.

We did get to be seated on a side of the theater that we were told, twice, was “horrible seating”. Once was by the staff (who could have sat us anywhere else), and once by the actor introducing the show. We missed a clear third of the stage, and about half of the action in the first act.

At the intermission, I moved to the back and enjoyed a full view of the second act.

We paid for a VIP show and got less than a whole show. It was disappointing. Especially, considering just how good the show turned out to be. The Tommy Wind Theater needs to fix this, immediately. I get selling seats to people who don’t show, but to be treated as such is just downright unprofessional.

Despite this, I’m still recommending the show. It’s just too damn good to pass up.

Tickets available at Evil Dead The Musical.

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