The West Side Show Room Brings Back Vampire Lesbians of Sodom for ArtScene

PRESS RELEASE 04/03/2014

The West Side Show Room presents:



Vampire Lesbians of Sodom

a play by Charles Busch

The West Side Show Room announces SCENEscene, an all day cabaret of short performances coinciding with The Rockford Area Arts Council’s ArtScene.    Open Friday April 11 from 5 - 10pm, and Saturday April 12 from 4 - 10pm, SCENEscene features short plays, storytellers, music, stand up comedy, and a stage combat demonstration.  Each day’s events culminate with at free performance of the wildly successful burlesque comedy Vampire Lesbians of Sodom at 9pm.

In addition to Vampire Lesbians, SCENEscene will include the following acts:  Up With (Some) People, a short play by Joshua Conkel; Storytelling/Monolgues by Adrienne Gunn, Michele Mancuso, and Misha Sanders Lentz; music by Firmish Skirmish; and a stage combat demonstration by Erin Philpott.

“We are excited to be a part of Spring ArtScene 2014,” said Mike Werckle, the Artistic Director of The West Side Show Room. “We are opening our doors for people to get a taste of the kind of exciting performances we are bringing back to downtown Rockford.”

SCENEscene performances will occur all day on the half hour, with time in between for socializing and learning about The West Side Show Room.  At the end of each day, Vampire Lesbians will be performed in its entirety for free.  Werckle encourages visitors to “walk down to The West Side Show Room after visiting all the great ArtScene locations and see our hilarious little play.”

The cast of Vampire Lesbians includes Carolyn Cadigan as nosy gossip columnist Oatsie Carewe. Carolyn is the former drama instructor at Keith Country Day School and co-founder of Rockford’s celebrated Artists’ Ensemble Theater. Veteran Chicago performer Erin Philpott stars as the “glacial and terrifying star of stage and screen” Madeleine Astarte.  Erin is a certified Fight Instructor and choreographed the fight scenes in the original Chicago production of Vampire Lesbians of Sodom.  Mike Werckle will also be reprising his role as the hideous succubus La Condesa Scrofula de Hoya

Written by Charles Busch and directed by Werckle, Vampire Lesbians of Sodom is one of the longest running Off-Broadway plays of all time, and provides an opportunity for this young, innovative theater company to perform the kind of raw, no holds-barred theater that is rarely experienced in Rockford.

According to Busch’s website, “Vampire Lesbians of Sodom tells the saga of two fatally seductive vampiresses whose paths first collide in ancient Sodom. Their bitter rivalry as bloodsuckers but more importantly, as actresses, endures for two thousand years with stops along the way in 1920’s silent movie Hollywood and contemporary Las Vegas.”  With outrageous humour, flamboyant cross-dressing, and ridiculous sight-gags, Vampire Lesbians of Sodom is a satire of Hollywood stardom done in a burlesque comedy style.

The West Side Show Room was founded by a diverse group of theater artists who are committed to bringing exciting, locally produced theater back to downtown Rockford.  Vampire Lesbians of Sodom is their inaugural show.

Mike Werckle (Artistic Director). Rockford native Mike Werckle completed the intensive Foundation Acting Program at California Institute of the Arts, and received his BFA in Character Animation in 1992.  After a long career in the video game industry, he went on to earn his MFA in Film Production from The University of Texas in 2006.  Using his mastery of both animation and film, Mike became a sought after Previsualization Animator and Visual Effects Artist, working alongside top directors to design thrilling sequences on films such as Superman Returns, Live Free or Die Hard, I Am Legend, Tropic Thunder, Machete, and Predators.  Mike recently helped design the dinosaur sequences for Terrence Malick's The Tree of Life (Palme d'Or, Cannes Film Festival, 2011) and worked with The Wachowskis on their upcoming sci-fi epic Jupiter Ascending.  Mike is currently the Owner and Creative Director of Animcorp, a full service animation and video production company which recently produced spots for Big Papa’s Barbecue, and Johnny Pamcakes.  

In 2013, Mike opened The West Side Show Room in Rockford with the goal of bringing exciting, locally produced theater back to downtown Rockford.


Listing Information


The West Side Show Room, 410 Mulberry Street, Rockford


Friday April 11, 5 - 10pm

Saturday April 12, 4 - 10pm

Ticket prices:

Free Admission



For more information please contact Mike Werckle at

For a digital copy of this press release, please visit