Staging Fright At Chiller Theater: The Musical
Many a Pittsburgher grew up watching Chiller Theater the late-night horror and science fiction program that ran from 1963 to 1983. This weekend The Strand Theatre in Zelienople will present Chiller Theater: the Musical. Actor and storyteller Tim Hartman joined Essential Pittsburgh with a preview of the upcoming music and comedy show.
Whereas Chiller Theater showed movies focusing on horror and science fiction Chiller Theater: the Musical will be focusing on fun more than fright.
“The show itself has lots of touchstones to Chiller Theater and we’re just trying to touch all those buttons people remember and love,” says Hartman.
The first act will feature Hartman, as Dracula, hosting a talk show. Guests will include some of your favorite horror characters, “singing songs that don’t really match who they are,” says Hartman. An example would be the Mummy singing No Doubt’s “Don’t Speak.”
The second act will feature actress and comedian Missy Moreno playing “Psychic Missy” who will perform palm readings and bring back the dead to sing songs.
Sadly, the show will not feature a character based on Chilly Billy Cardille, the legendary host of Chiller Theater. “If you can’t get Chilly Billy then I’d say don’t touch that and have lots of fun with lots of jokes and lots of singing,” says Hartman.
When asked why the popularity of Chiller Theater still endures Hartman says, “We live in a time where that kind of local programming doesn’t exist anymore. It was just local guys having fun.”
More Essential Pittsburgh segments can be heard here.