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Halloween 2011

Voltaire Descends Into Hell Before Halloween

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Dark goth musician Voltaire descended into Hell in Atlanta before Halloween! If you haven’t heard of Voltaire, then you probably never attended a Dragon*Con party in Atlanta (biggest sci-fi, nerd lovin’ convention in the United States) or watched “The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy” (a dark cartoon about two children and their relationship with the grim reaper which aired on Cartoon Network from 2003-2008). Voltaire’s Dark Unicorn Cabaret brought the dark side of Halloween enchantment and song early to Atlanta, following Dragon*Con weekend and stopping through before October’s Halloween festivities have begun. The tour attracted a crowd dressed mostly in all black with several men wearing Victorian style top hats and quite a few women who were wearing black corsets.

Opening for Voltaire on Thursday, September 29, in Hell at the Masquerade was Hellblinki, the side show act of Captain Stab-Tuggo & Maybelle, and This Way to the Egress. The first opener, a trio of musicians called Hellblinki, played dark Goth-inspired dance songs to set the mood. After the first band, Voltaire took the stage and riled the audience up by making nerdy sci-fi references about Star Wars, klingons, and 20-sided dice. What can you say – he knows his audience and they love him for it! After this top hat crowned dark prince left the stage, two side show performers, Captain Stab-Tuggo and Maybelle performed almost inhumane tricks with their bodies. Audience members may have recognized the duo from their featured act and tricks on “America’s Got Talent.” Captain Stab-Tuggo got right to it and put a nine inch nail and a long drill bit through an orifice that no man or woman should ever put those items even near! With Maybelle’s continuous urging, Tuggo continued on with the wonderment and grossness of the side show by swallowing a sword. Then he went on to perform freakish shows of strength by lifting and swinging different weights from his septum and eyelids/sockets. Maybelle, not to be completely outdone by Tuggo, lifted and swung weights from her septum as well.

This Way to the Egress performed after that crazy side-show finished up. They used a variety of instruments to create a circus-esque, rag time-y, danceable sound which at times felt like a devilish death march. The drummer simultaneously played drums and hit a wind chime with his left drum stick; there was a guy performing using a violin bow on a saw; a lady on the keyboard; and at different times, an accordion player and a guy sounding off on a French horn. Two of my favorite performances from their set included the number when the female lead sang and fanned what looked like flower petals in front of the musicians and also another number when the male musicians hovered over her and pretended that she was a puppet.

Voltaire, of course, was the grand finale! He was a charming vision in all black, wearing a fur collared black coat which framed his tall physique. Long black hair and a goatee gave him a devilish appearance as he pandered in song and jest to the crowd. The music was of modern gothic quality yet reminiscent of Dr. Seuss’ Mr. Grinch theme song with violin twists and evil Halloween inspired lyrics. He sang crowd favorites, “Brains!,” “Death Death (Devil, Devil, Evil, Evil song),” “Zombie Prostitute,” and the ultimate one song encore ending, “When You’re Evil.” The charismatic Voltaire had the audience singing along for most of the night and was even accompanied by a pretty goth girl go-go dancer who bumped and grinded through several songs. She also played with the crowd as balloons were volleyed through the air. Voltaire’s songs and CDs range from raunchy horror grotesque to country sci-fi comedy to kid friendly Halloween songs – all of which would make a perfect addition to any spooky Halloween party set list. Voltaire’s Dark Unicorn Cabaret show was the perfect way to usher in October’s Halloween festivities!

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Halloween 2011

Halloween Haunts 2011: The Final Countdown!

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October is almost over, so it’s time to get in a few last minute scares at haunted houses before we get into November and the holiday season. Here’s our list of a few spooky joints to visit around town: Atlanta Zombie Apocalypse (Conley, GA), Chamber of Horrors (Atlanta), Netherworld (Norcross, GA), 13 Stories Haunted House (Kennesaw, GA), Folklore Haunted House (Dallas, GA), Frightmore Haunted Attraction (Morrow, GA), Gates of Misery (Rome, GA), Horror Hill Haunted Trails (Newnan, GA), and Paranoia Haunted House (Roswell, GA). All of these haunts are open this weekend and on Halloween night. Quite a few will be open every night up until Halloween. A select few will even be open November 4th and 5th for your very last minute scare and scream needs. Happy Haunting and Happy Halloween, ghouls and dolls! xo – Atlanta’s Zombie Marilyn Monroe

 

ATLANTA ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE

In its 2nd year as a Halloween attraction, the Atlanta Zombie Apocalypse (AZA) has received praise as one of the best immersive, interactive horror attractions around. (Read the Atlanta Backstage Beat’s review (with pictures) by Brook Hewitt: Atlanta Zombie Apocalypse 2011) The AZA is touted as 100,000 square feet of zombie apocalyptic terror where participants are led by post-military leaders through a zombie-filled abandoned truck stop with a 2-story motel, ransacked restaurants, businesses, tight offices, long hallways, courtyards, and truck garages. The place is filled with zombies, blood, and dead bodies – if you ever wanted to know if you could survive a zombie apocalypse or what it would be like to be in a horror movie, then this is the attraction for you! There is also a separate area where they hold the Zombie Shoot, which allows horror fiends a chance to “kill” zombies with paintball guns (remember to aim for the head!). AZA was created as the brain child of local Atlanta horror aficionados, SPFX creators, and actors/actresses from the Silver Scream Spook Show and Dear God No! movie in collaboration with the Plaza Theatre owners.

Open (ends 10/31):
Box office opens at 7:30 p.m. and closes when the attraction closes
Thursdays through Saturdays from 8 p.m. until 12 a.m. (midnight)
Sundays from 8 p.m. until 11 p.m.
Halloween from 8 p.m. until 11 p.m.

Where:
Safety Wolf Combat Sports facility
4215 Thurman Rd.
Conley, GA 30288-1136
(404) 665-3992

Cost:
$3 for parking (no valet)
$20 for the Zombie Apocalypse only
$15 Zombie shoot only
$30 for a combo ticket which includes both the Zombie Apocalypse attraction and Zombie shoot
$100 VIP pass to skip the line
Box office accepts cash, Visa, Mastercard, or Debit/ATM cards
(No discount for children; not advisable for children under 13, but that’s up to parents’ discretion.)

The Pallookaville handmade gourmet carnival food truck will be outside selling food as well. Cash only (prices under $10).
http://www.pallookaville.com/

AZA merchandise will also be available for purchase.
Prints of photos taken in the photo booth can be ordered through http://wackomedia.com/aza/

Because parts of AZA are an outside attraction – this will be weather permitting, please check website for updates and further information:
www.atlantazombie.com

 

CHAMBER OF HORRORS

When you are looking to take a shockingly sick excursion through a haunted house, then head on out to the Chamber of Horrors at the Masquerade. Atlanta’s only extreme, adults-only, R-rated haunted house will take you through the TORTUREco facility where wealthy disaffected and psychotic sadists alike take their pleasure in torturing the young, beautiful, and innocent. If you liked torture porn movies like Saw and Hostel, then you will enjoy the blood, carnage, torture and nudity in the Chamber of Horrors. Opened in 2009, this will be the third year in business for Chamber of Horrors and the TORTUREco deviants. Be warned that you may be squirted with warm (fake) blood and (fake) bodily fluids during your trip through TORTUREco facility. Local Atlanta artist Rene Arriagada in association with Gorehound Productions and the minds behind Splatter Cinema and Atlanta HorrorFest are the masterminds behind the Chamber of Horrors torture facility.

Open (every night through 10/31; last two days are November 4 & 5):
Sundays through Thursday from 8 p.m. until 12 a.m. (midnight)
Fridays and Saturdays from 8 p.m. until 1 a.m.
Halloween from 8 p.m. until 3 a.m.

Where:
The Masquerade (line forms to the left of the Masquerade at the Music Park entrance)
695 North Ave. N.E.
Atlanta, GA 30308 404-577-8178

Cost:
R-rated restriction – admission is 18 and up only!
Box office at the door, Splatter Bar & Lounge, and parking lot accept cash only. Tickets can be purchased in advance from Ticketmaster.com. Discounted tickets are available as add-ons to show tickets at the Masquerade.
$5 parking (limited free street parking is available, but park at your own risk)
$17 general admission, but admission price goes up to $22 for October 28 through the 31st.
$27 speed pass (limited availability) to skip ahead in line, but this price goes up to $32 on October 29 through the 31st.
$45 VIP Pass – speed pass, plus VIP-only limited edition Chamber of Horrors gift and coupon for free drink at the Splatter Bar (very limited availability).

While waiting in line to go through the attraction, visit the Splatter Bar & Lounge, which is a full open cash bar located outside next to the waiting line. On select evenings, you will be able to enjoy the musical stylings of various entertainers.

http://www.chambersofhorroratl.com

 

NETHERWORLD

Ranked as the #1 Haunted House in America by Hauntworld.com (in 2007, 2009, & 2010), and Fangoria.com (2009), Netherworld attracts huge crowds every year because of its cutting edge special effects, unique themes, extremely detailed sets and original monster and props. For the final chapter of Blood Night Saga, The Nightmare Kings are primordial clawed and fanged things wrapped in tattered robes that can shape-shift into anything to hunt human prey, feasting on human fear (and nightmares) before consuming their souls. The Forces of the Illuminati (Illuminati Warriors, Vampire Lord Goulich and his Vampire Brides, Werewolves, and Zombies among others) are trying to halt the Netherworld (Gargoyles and the Nightmare Kings amongst other monsters) invasion of Earth. The other attraction, Raw Meat, is a journey through subways and sewers filled with snakes, bones, cannibals, and giant alligators. Netherworld was founded in 1997 by TV and movie professionals, including costume designers, producers and creature fabricators. Halloween 2 (movie), Zombieland (movie), and currently The Walking Dead (TV show) have used portions of Netherworld for film, or utilized their props and actors, or crew in some way.

Open (every night through 10/31; last two days are November 4 & 5):
Sundays from 7 p.m. until 11 p.m.
Monday through Thursday from 7:30 p.m. until 11 p.m.
Fridays and Saturdays from 7 p.m. until 12 a.m. (midnight)
Halloween from 7 p.m. until 12 a.m. (midnight)
November 4th & 5th – Open from 7 p.m. until 11 p.m.

Where:
6624 Dawson Blvd
Norcross, GA 30093
(404) 608-2484

Cost:
Look for coupons in Subway locations and in the Creative Loafing (NOT accepted/valid for Fridays, Saturdays, or Halloween)
$22 for The Nightmares (main haunt)
$28 for The Nightmares plus Raw Meat
$50 Speed Pass available on select nights (gets you in front of the line for both attractions)
Tickets can be bought online through the Netherworld website and picked up at will call (not the ticket booth) with receipt print out and a valid ID and the credit card that was used to purchase the tickets. All advance tickets have a service fee at time of purchase. No refunds or returns will be issued for any reason.
(No discount for children; not advisable for children, but that’s up to parents’ discretion.)
Group tickets (20 or more) can be purchased by calling the Group Ticket Sales line (404) 536-0752.

http://www.fearworld.com

13 STORIES HAUNTED HOUSE

First off, there is no such thing as a haunted house that gives you your money back if you make it all the way through (myth busted on Snopes.com). In this haunted house, you will ride an old elevator down 13 floors and encounter rats, spiders, snakes, cockroaches, and clowns. You have to sign a waiver to even be allowed into the haunt and it has been said that people have been thrown out of windows here!

Open (every night through 10/31; last two days are November 4 & 5):
Sundays through Thursdays from dark until 10 p.m.
Fridays and Saturdays from dark until 12 a.m. (midnight)
Halloween from dark until 11 p.m.
November 4th & 5th – Open from dark until 10 p.m.

Where:
13 Stories Haunted House
2975 Ring Road (near Town Center Mall)
Kennesaw, Georgia 30144

Cost:
$22 for one person to go through both “13 Stories Haunted House” attraction and “Big Top Secret in 3D”
Group rates for 20 people or more (reserve in advance on their website). Online coupon will actually give you a better entry rate (with restricted dates) in most cases (unless you have a group of more than 40 people).
Online coupon: $5 off for October 24 through 27th. (Check their homepage online because last time I checked, they were offering a web special for $10 off if you mention it.) You must bring coupon with you to redeem it. Only one coupon per person. (You can also show the coupon from your smart phone, but only one smart phone coupon per person allowed.) Coupons cannot be shared.
Tickets can be bought online through the 13 Stories Haunted House website and picked up at Online Ticket/VIP Window. All advance tickets have a service fee at time of purchase. No refunds or returns will be issued for any reason.
(No discount for children; not advisable for children, but that’s up to parents’ discretion.)
Box office accepts cash, Visa, and Mastercard (a small fee may be charged for using a card).

http://www.13storieshauntedhouse.com

 

FOLKLORE HAUNTED HOUSE

A curse has befallen Nightshade Manor and the Evil Demon Queen of the Succubi, Lilith, has been reborn. She has now begun her conquest of humankind as she opens a rift in time and space to allow the souls of the dead and worse evils to escape into the realm of the living. These creatures are dubbed, “The Fallen,” and will stop at nothing in their unrelenting bloodlust. All who enter will face malice and chaos as they try to esacpe the newly infected in Nightshade Manor.

Open (every night through 10/31; last two days are November 4 & 5):
Sundays through Thursdays from 7 p.m. until 11 p.m.
Fridays and Saturdays from 7 p.m. until 12 a.m. (midnight)
Haunt doors creak open nightly at 7:30 p.m.

Where:
Folklore Haunted House
1265 Merchants Drive
Dallas, GA 30132-5036

Cost:
$22 for General Admission
$5 The Last Ride
$40 RIP Speed Pass (includes The Last Ride) – a limited number are available every night (gets you in front of the line for the attraction)
Tickets can be bought online through the Folklore Haunted House website and printed out. All advance tickets have a service fee at time of purchase. No refunds or returns will be issued for any reason. Onsite ticket office accepts credit cards.
(No discount for children; not advisable for children, but that’s up to parents’ discretion. Children under 16 years old must be accompanied by a parent.)
Group discounts are available via online ticket purchase only. Purchase blocks of 15 tickets for $255.00. (This is a savings of $5.00 per ticket.)

There will be food concessions on site.

http://folklorehauntedhouse.com

 

FRIGHTMORE HAUNTED ATTRACTION

Relive your worst nightmares at Georgia’s newest scary haunt. Ghoulish lairs, ghostlike visions, new characters, new scenes, and new animatronic surprises await you throughout this frightful haunt.

Open (every night through ends 10/31; final night 11/5):
Sundays through Thursdays from 7 p.m. until 11 p.m.
Fridays and Saturdays from 7 p.m. until 12 a.m. (midnight)
Saturday, November 5th – Final romp through the haunt (pizza & drinks and meet & greet with the monsters. Tickets must be purchased in advance – $32.50 per person).

Where:
Frightmore
1912 Mt. Zion Road
Building 1865 C
Morrow, GA 30260

Cost:
$20 per adult
$12 per child (12 and under)
$32.50 VIP Adult ticket
$20 VIP Child’s ticket
Group tickets (15 or more) can be purchased by calling the Group Ticket Sales line (404)xxx-0752.
25% Discounts for Active Military and Veterans – bring your military ID or VA ID to show the ticket counter.
Tickets can be bought online through the Frightmore website and picked up at the ticket counter with ticket confirmation page. All advance tickets have a service fee at time of purchase. No refunds or returns will be issued for any reason.
Ticket counter accepts Visa, Mastercard, and Debit cards.

http://www.frightmore.com

 

GATES OF MISERY

No one has ever escaped the rein of terror after entering the Gates of Misery. Walk through countless rooms of misery and pain, listening to the endless screams of the tortured. Come face to face with your worst nightmares – torture, torment, terrifying screams, and someone or something breathing down your neck as you are trapped in this dark haunted house.

Open (every night through 10/31):
Tickets go on sale nightly at 7:00 pm; the haunted house opens at 7:30 pm
Sundays through Thursdays from 7:30 p.m. until 10:30 p.m.
Fridays and Saturdays from 7:30 p.m. until 11:00 p.m.
Halloween night they stop selling tickets at midnight and stay open until the last soul is devoured!

Where:
Gates of Misery Haunted House
174 Chatillon Road
Rome, GA 30161

Cost:
$15 per person
Tickets can be bought online through the Gates of Misery Haunted House website and printed out. All advance tickets have a service fee at time of purchase. No refunds or returns will be issued for any reason.
Use coupon code misery2 to get $2 off your online purchase.
(No discount for children; not advisable for children under 12, but that’s up to parents’ discretion. Children under 12 years old must be accompanied by a parent.)
Group rates for 10 or more people available, please contact Gates of Misery for details.

http://gatesofmisery.com

 

HORROR HILL

Since 1984, a local Newnan family created and runs the Horror Hill Haunted Trails attraction and The Mortuary, Veritgo, and Clown Haus 3D. Throughout the years, the family has grown their attraction and added new technology and scenes. With many years of experience behind them, they have costumed actors with professional makeup, fog machines, lasers, strobe lights, trap doors and animatronics, which spook haunt goers on the trail and in large buildings, cabins, mazes, tunnels, and bridges.

Open (ends 10/31):
Fridays and Saturdays from dark until 12 a.m. (midnight)
Sundays from dark until 10 p.m.
Halloween from dark until 11 p.m.

Where:
Horror Hill Haunted Trails
181 Ware Road
Newnan, GA 30263

Cost:
$25 per person for a combo ticket (includes The Mortuary, Vertigo, Clown Haus in 3D, and the Horror Hill Haunted Trails)
Online coupon: $5 off for October 30th. You must bring coupon with you to redeem it. Only one coupon per person. Coupons cannot be shared.
Tickets can be bought online through the Horror Hill website and printed out. All advance tickets have a service fee at time of purchase. No refunds or returns will be issued for any reason.
(No discount for children; not advisable for children, but that’s up to parents’ discretion.)
Group reservations are available online only.

There will be a concession stand located at the event.

http://www.horrorhill.com

 

PARANOIA HAUNTED HOUSE

Paranoia Haunted House is self-dubbed, “one of Atlanta’s scariest and most disturbing haunted houses.” With 15,000 square feet or haunt, featuring 15 rooms and a maze of hallways, this is not a haunt for the timid. You will be terrorized, horrified, and running for your life!

Open (ends 10/31):
Friday through Sunday from 7 p.m. until 12 a.m. (midnight)
Halloween from 7 p.m. until 12 a.m. (midnight)
Box office opens at 7 p.m.; Haunted House opens at 7:30 p.m.

Where:
Paranoia Haunted House
10895 Alpharetta Highway
Roswell, GA 30076

Cost:
$22 for a Regular ticket
$40 for a Paranoia Pass – only a select number available per night (gets you in front of the line). The Paranoia Passes can only be purchased at the box office (not for sale online).
Tickets may also be purchased at Andretti Karting and Games along with Special Combo tickets that offer a fun family night at Andretti and admission into the demented world of Paranoia Haunted House.
Tickets can be bought online through the Paranoia Haunted House website and printed out. All advance tickets have a service fee at time of purchase. No refunds or returns will be issued for any reason.
(No discount for children; not advisable for children, but that’s up to parents’ discretion.)

http://www.paranoiahauntedhouse.com

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Halloween 2011

Ghastly Dreadfuls Sell Out at Center for Puppetry Arts

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Reporters for The Backstage Beat recently had the pleasure of attending a performance of The Ghastly Dreadfuls, and were astounded by the beautiful mixture of live music and dance combined with incredible elaborate puppet shorts.  From the set design to the choreography, this production proved to be one of the most cleverly crafted and executed theater sets this reporter has seen in recent years.

With a well rounded production introduced the audience to the Dreadful Family of ghouls who rise from the grave during this time of years and take human form (in most cases).  Rising from the dead, it seems, involves a lot of wonderful showmanship and musicianship in Victorian inspired costuming. Each of the Dreadful is introduced in turn by the ring master of this frightful circus, Simply Dreadful.

The show continues by interspersing vaudeville styles shows with a selection of puppet vignettes representing puppet stories from around the globe.   Some of the vignettes include songs such as the opener, “La Petite Vampyr,” and others work through voice over or dramatization, such as the compelling “11:59”. Not one of the pieces or songs fell flat. In  a very real way, this production combined the best of early 20th century live theater with the best of modern puppetry.

While this reporter is not an expert in modern puppetry, The Ghastly Dreadfuls is more than just a marionette show and captivates by using a number of technologies. Some segments do use straight up marionettes, other use stick figure puppets, giant plywood cut outs, or even puppets that can be considered dolls manipulated directly the by puppeteer director.  One amazing set involving witches, skeletons, black cats and a sophisticated

Puppetry is an art form on the rise, and there is no better place to experience the best in puppetry than Atlanta’s internationally known, home for puppetry. The Backstage Beat urges you to get your tickets at the box office for the remaining shows, and advises readers to keep an eye future shows from the Center for Puppetry Arts, plus an exclusive 4 pack family tickets to Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.

 

More information:

Center for Puppetry Arts

Ticket Sales Office
tickets@puppet.org
Phone: 404.873.3391
Fax: 404.873.9907

Ticket Office Hours:
Mon-Sat: 9am-5pm
Sun: 11am-5pm

 

Volunteer at the Center for Puppetry Arts

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Halloween 2011

Atlanta Zombie Apocalypse

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Do you remember when you were a little kid and you would “play like”? Meaning, “play like you are a bad guy and you are chasing me…”, you would actually make yourself believe that your best friend was a”bad guy” and you were running for your life. Your heart would pound anxiously as you tried to escape the evil scenario that you and your buddy had cooked up. I am happy to report that you can relive some of that childhood drama for around 25 minutes of your adult life at The Atlanta Zombie Apocalypse. AZA as it is known is an immersive, interactive haunt experience. In its second year, AZA has grown not only in square footage  to “100,000 square feet of terror” but it has increased its cast of trained actors and upped the story line that you become a part of. Thespians are one of the reasons that AZA is so much fun and enables you to feel like you are playing a fun but scary game.

You start the event out by being metal detected and questioned by very official looking law enforcers for the Center For Disease Development. You are warned to not touch a thing due to the recent outbreak of zombie that is highly contagious. Blood zombie and otherwise is EVERYWHERE so this becomes a challenging task and part of the fun. You quickly realize that the law enforcers who claim that they are trying to protect you are really trying to trap you into being used for their fiendish experiments. You spend the rest of your time there being led by an eclectic mix of leaders through the haunt, each time thinking you might be safe and quickly learning you are not.

When my tour started, I was a little worried that the teen age girls who were squealing at each hand that popped out and every creature that groaned would be a distraction to my enjoyment but on the contrary, they ended up being entertaining. I have never been to a haunt before where I actually had to run. On three occasions me and my posse escaped harm from running (not required but encouraged). At different times we were separately approached and personally spoken to by different leaders and zombies. This made each tour personal to each group that goes through. I was asked to lead my team down a very dark bloody hallway with zombies groping for our feet and brains. Fortunately, we made it to safety and out of the building with no visible zombie bites or contamination. WHEW!

Once we were safe, we had the option to shoot specially designated zombies with paint balls. You are instructed to aim for the head because as we all know that is the only way to kill a zombie.

You have two and a half more weeks to see how you would perform in the event of a zombie apocalypse. The tours are very well manged and run smoothly making your wait time minimal. While you are waiting, there are Palookaville treats available for purchase as well as some pretty cool t-shirts and other AZA memorabilia. AZA hours are Thurs-Sat 7:45-12:00 and Sun 7:45-11:00. AZA will run until Halloween night where it will close early.

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