More than 20 years ago — 27 to be exact — Icelandic Eurovision icon Paul Oscar was a relatively unknown grad student, who decided to take part in his school’s annual play. The role he played kickstarted his fame in Iceland and before he could utter the words “I’m a sweet transvestite” the whole country knew who the 21-year-old was.
The role was, of course, the provocative transvestite scientist Dr. Frank-N-Furter, who has become one of history’s most beloved fictional characters, and influential in so many ways. The play originally premiered as a movie musical in 1975, with the legendary Tim Curry as Dr.Frank, and has been staged more often than we can count in the 43 years that have passed since Brad and Janet’s car broke down in the middle of nowhere and they were swept into the strange world of Dr. Frank-N-Furter.
Paul Oscar himself can’t wait to tackle the part again, especially since he feels that what Frank-N-Furter truly stands for is important for the world today.
“I’m stoked for this!” he said in an interview with www.ruv.is. “I think it’s a good thing that Frank and I are getting together again after 27 years. I think that the message in The Rocky Horror Picture Show is more important now than ever. While the leaders of this world continue to use minorities to create fear, there is room for Rocky Horror, for it’s about welcoming the outsiders. To me especially, it’s about the freaks confronting what is considered the “norm”.
In another interview with the Icelandic magazine MAN, Paul admits that as a 21-year-old he didn’t fully understand the character, but now, as a 48-year old, his perception of Frank is deeper and he identifies with him on a whole new level. “I was just a kid in drag back then. Now I get completely what Frank stands for,” he says.
The meaning behind The Rocky Horror Picture Show might be different between individuals, but it is safe to say that it spoke loudly to the LGBT community in the 70’s and continues to do so even today. And not just the LGBT community. It speaks to everybody. There is always room for Frank, Riff Raff, Magenta and of course, the blond bombshell who is Rocky himself. There is room for Brad and Janet’s vanilla like characters in the beginning, and the sexually awoken Brad and Janet in the end. There’s room for everybody, no matter who they are, what they look like or how they act. And there is definitely ALWAYS room for Paul Oscar in our lives, with or without suspenders. And as icing on the cake, the show premiered on March 16th, which happens to be Paul’s birthday.