Richard O'Brien's cult classic The Rocky Horror Show marks its 30th birthday in 2003 and is celebrating with a new UK-wide tour led by pop star Jonathan Wilkes. The tour opens at Bromley's Churchill Theatre on 30 September 2002 before continuing until March 2003 to venues across the country.

The rock musical opens with two all-American high school sweethearts, Janet Weiss and Brad Majors, on a stormy night in a forest. When their car breaks down, they hope to find help at the castle whose light they see shining in the distance. But when they knock on the castle's door, they're ushered into a world of unexpected - and irresistible - perversion. There they meet a gathering of bizarre characters including Frank 'n' Furter, a pouting sex-mad transvestite who comes form the planet Transsexual in the galaxy of Transylvania; fellow alien Columbia; his pet boy toy Rocky; the dastardly butler Riff Raff and his sister Magenta.

Wilkes (pictured), who plays Frank 'n' Furter, is best known for his pop single "Just Another Day" and for singing "Me and My Shadow" with Robbie Williams at the Royal Albert Hall. The winner of the Cameron Mackintosh Young Entertainer, Wilkes recently completed a UK-wide tour of Godspell.

Wilkes is joined in The Rocky Horror Show cast by Neil Couperthwaite as Riff Raff (Rent, Grease, Starlight Express, Mother Clap's Molly House), Graham Tudor as Rocky (Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, The Witches of Eastwick), Drew Jaymson as Eddie (Taboo), Katie Rowley-Jones (Janet), Jon Boydon (Brad), Andrea Stevens (Magenta) and Sally Hunt (Columbia).

Inspired by O'Brien's childhood love of schlock sci-fi films, the original Rocky Horror premiered at the Royal Court Theatre Upstairs in 1973 and later spawned the 1975 cult film (starring Susan Sarandon, Tim Curry and Meatloaf) as well as countless revivals. The score includes "Sweet Transvestite," "Damn It Janet" and "Time Warp."

The 30th anniversary tour is directed by Christopher Malcolm, who starred as Brad in the original Royal Court production and who directed the show's Silver Jubilee revival, which starred Jason Donovan and transferred to the West End. Following Bromley, The Rocky Horror Show continues to Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Bradford, Richmond, Woking, Stoke-on-Trent and Brighton. More dates and venues will be announced shortly.

- by Sarah Beaumont