Here is the letter I got from the Hamilton City Council;
Last night (25th February 2004) the Hamilton City Council (New Zealand)
strongly supported erecting a statue depicting a character from the
internationally renowned Rocky Horror Picture Show on the site of Hamilton's
former Embassy Theatre, to recognise the show's birthplace.
The show's creator Richard O'Brien, a former Hamiltonian, developed the idea
of Rocky Horror while living and working in Hamilton and attending movies at
the now demolished Embassy Theatre. The Rocky Horror Picture Show has a world
wide following and notoriety.
The statue is being funded predominately by the Perry Foundation that was
founded by Brian Perry back in 1975 with a $100,000.
Weta Productions who created the special props for the Lord of the Rings
trilogy will build the statue, which will depict Riff Raff, whom O'Brien
played in the Rocky Horror show.
The Riff Raff Public Art Trust, which includes project initiator Mark Servian
as one of the trustees, has provided the impetus for the project.
At its meeting last night, Hamilton City Council agreed to accept the project
as a piece of public art for the city and to contribute a minor part of the
funding. The Perry Foundation is making $100,000 available with up to another
$25,000 from Council.
Perry Foundation chairman Barry Coombes says the Foundation is delighted to be
able find such a unique project to mark the special contribution that Brian
Perry has made to the city of Hamilton through the Perry Foundation.
"Brian has contributed in so many ways to the city over the years. Like many
of us he recognises that we need to do more to celebrate our arts and cultural
heritage. The great thing about this project is that it tells a special story
about Hamilton and it gives us opportunity to promote our city as a vibrant
and diverse metropolitan centre," he says.
Project initiator Mark Servian says it is absolutely tremendous that the Perry
Foundation and Hamilton City Council are supporting the Rocky Horror project
in the way they are.
"Since I started to have Richard O'Brien's connection with Hamilton recognised
I have had amazing support for the statue project from all around the world. I
believe Hamilton will be taken-aback with the attention it receives from this
"Followers of Rocky Horror who live in the United States have told me that
they will make a point of coming to Hamilton to see the statue and know many
others who will do the same," says Mark Servian.
Chair of Council's Social and Community Committee Pippa Mahood says the Rocky
Horror statue will provide significant promotional and economic opportunities
for the city.
"There is no question that this piece of public art promotes a point of
difference for our city in terms of arts and culture and I believe it will
certainly result in additional visitors to the city over the years to come,"
Among the potential opportunities that have been identified in conjunction
with the statue include:
A significant opening event with Richard O'Brien and a number of other
international celebrities in attendance
Bring the Rocky Horror stage show to Hamilton to mark the unveiling of the
Regular events such as a Rocky Horror festival held in the city
A special exhibition at the museum to recognise the part Hamilton has played
in the development of the Rocky Horror show
The showing of the Rocky Horror movie as an outdoor event at Waikato Stadium.
It is planned to have the statue made and in place before the end of the year.
The Rocky Horror Picture Show started as a small London stage show, became an
international hit, before moving to the big screen. It is still played, as a
movie or stage show, all over the world.