Welcome to My Nightmare (film)

Last updated
Welcome to My Nightmare
WelcomeToMyNightmare.jpg
Directed by David Winters
Produced by Bob Ezrin
David Winters
Written by Alan Rudolph
Starring Alice Cooper
Release date
  • 1976 (1976)(Cinema)
  • 1981 (1981)(VHS)
  • 2002 (2002)(DVD)
Running time
84 min.
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$600,000

Welcome to My Nightmare is a 1976 music concert film of Alice Cooper's show of the same name. It was produced, directed and choreographed by David Winters. The film accompanied the album, the stage show (also produced, directed and choreographed by Winters) by the same name and the TV special Alice Cooper: The Nightmare , the first ever rock music video album, starring Cooper and Vincent Price in person. [1] [2] Though it failed at the box office, it later became a midnight movie favorite and a cult classic.

Film Sequence of images that give the impression of movement

Film, also called movie or motion picture, is a medium used to simulate experiences that communicate ideas, stories, perceptions, feelings, beauty or atmosphere by the means of recorded or programmed moving images along with other sensory stimulations. The word "cinema", short for cinematography, is often used to refer to filmmaking and the film industry, and to the art form that is the result of it.

Alice Cooper American rock singer, songwriter and musician

Alice Cooper is an American singer, songwriter, and actor whose career spans over 50 years. With his distinctive raspy voice and a stage show that features guillotines, electric chairs, fake blood, deadly snakes, baby dolls, and dueling swords, Cooper is considered by music journalists and peers alike to be "The Godfather of Shock Rock". Though sometimes also called "The Father of Shock Rock", the former is Cooper's most commonly agreed-upon title. He has drawn equally from horror films, vaudeville, and garage rock to pioneer a macabre and theatrical brand of rock designed to shock people.

Concert tour series of concerts by a single artist in different venues

A concert tour is a series of concerts by an artist or group of artists in different cities, countries or locations. Often concert tours are named to differentiate different tours by the same artist and to associate a specific tour with a particular album or product. Especially in the popular music world, such tours can become large-scale enterprises that last for several months or even years, are seen by hundreds of thousands or millions of people, and bring in millions of dollars in ticket revenues. A performer who embarks on a concert tour is called a touring artist.

Contents

In 1975, Alice Cooper released his first solo album, Welcome to My Nightmare , and a huge theatrical stage show was created and put together by Winters to 'tour the album'. While in the past the Alice Cooper stage show was semi-improvisatory, with confrontational elements of violence and satire (see Good to See You Again, Alice Cooper ), the new production was purely horror-themed and professionally choreographed and performed to the split second (Winters had a long history of choreographing and directing big celebrity films, stage and TV shows starring in the cast of West Side Story and choreographing 4 films with Elvis Presley and 5 films with Ann-Margret). [3] With the edginess removed (gone were the bloody guillotine, the spit and the skewered baby dolls, although "Only Women Bleed" presented a drunken, physically abusive side to the character), the Welcome to My Nightmare show was part a carefully planned move toward a more mainstream-friendly 'Alice'.

<i>Welcome to My Nightmare</i> 1975 studio album by Alice Cooper

Welcome to My Nightmare is the first solo album by Alice Cooper, released in March 1975. It is Alice Cooper's first solo album, and his only album for the Atlantic Records label. Welcome to My Nightmare is a concept album. Played in sequence, the songs form a journey through the nightmares of a child named Steven. The album inspired the Alice Cooper: The Nightmare TV special, a worldwide concert tour in 1975, and the Welcome to My Nightmare concert film in 1976. The ensuing tour was one of the most over-the-top excursions of that era. Most of Lou Reed’s band joined Cooper for this record.

<i>Good to See You Again, Alice Cooper</i> 1974 feature film starring Alice Cooper

Good to See You Again, Alice Cooper is a 1974 feature film starring Alice Cooper. The movie primarily features live concert footage of the Alice Cooper band on their record-breaking Billion Dollar Babies tour, filmed in Texas in April 1973, with some footage from other tour stops, including the Memorial Coliseum, Portland, Oregon, intercut with 'comedy' scenes of a German film director chasing the "Cooper gang" for revenge after they abandoned his would-be masterpiece movie.

Choreography the art of arranging movements, such as in dance

Choreography is the art or practice of designing sequences of movements of physical bodies in which motion, form, or both are specified. Choreography may also refer to the design itself. A choreographer is one who creates choreographies by practicing the art of choreography, a process known as choreographing. Choreography is used in a variety of fields, including musical theater, cheerleading, cinematography, gymnastics, fashion shows, ice skating, marching band, show choir, theatre, synchronized swimming, cardistry, video game production and animated art. In the performing arts, choreography applies to human movement and form. In dance, choreography is also known as dance choreography or dance composition.

Welcome to My Nightmare was a phantasmagorical exposition of music and theatre themed around a nightmare experienced by a young boy named Steven. Costing US$600,000 to produce, the show was a grand visual spectacle with an elaborate stage set, pre-filmed projections, four dancers, and elaborate costumes. Set in a graveyard/bedroom, a well-drilled band ran through the new album and a selection of older hits, while Alice encountered giant spiders, dancing skeletons, faceless silver demons and a 9-foot 'cyclops'.

Concert footage was taken from a series of London shows at the Wembley Arena on September 11–12, 1975, but the film was a box office failure in its original 1976 release. However, like Phantom of the Paradise , The Rocky Horror Picture Show and others, Welcome to My Nightmare found a low-volume but dependable audience on the midnight movie circuit. The film is out of sequence with the live show, and the final Department of Youth segment has some post-production inserts.

Wembley Arena An indoor arena in Wembley, London

Wembley Arena is an indoor arena adjacent to Wembley Stadium in Wembley, London. Used for music, comedy, family entertainment and sport, the 12,500-seat facility is London's second-largest indoor arena after The O2 Arena, and the ninth-largest in the United Kingdom.

<i>Phantom of the Paradise</i> 1974 film by Brian De Palma

Phantom of the Paradise is a 1974 American musical rock opera horror comedy film written and directed by Brian De Palma, and scored by and starring Paul Williams. In the film, a disfigured composer writes his music for a woman he loves so that she will sing it. However, a record producer betrays him and steals his music to open his rock palace, The Paradise. Betrayed, the composer dons a new appearance and exacts revenge on the producer. It co-stars William Finley and Jessica Harper.

<i>The Rocky Horror Picture Show</i> 1975 film by Jim Sharman

The Rocky Horror Picture Show is a 1975 musical comedy horror film by 20th Century Fox, produced by Lou Adler and Michael White and directed by Jim Sharman. The screenplay was written by Sharman and actor Richard O'Brien, who is also a member of the cast. The film is based on the 1973 musical stage production The Rocky Horror Show, with music, book, and lyrics by O'Brien. The production is a parody tribute to the science fiction and horror B movies of the 1930s through to the early 1960s. Along with O'Brien, the film stars Tim Curry, Susan Sarandon, and Barry Bostwick and is narrated by Charles Gray with cast members from the original Royal Court Theatre, Roxy Theatre, and Belasco Theatre productions including Nell Campbell and Patricia Quinn.

The film was first issued commercially on VHS in 1981, with numerous reissues since. A DVD issue was released in 2002, with the US version featuring commentary by Cooper.

VHS Consumer-level analog video tape recording and cassette form factor standard

VHS is a standard for consumer-level analog video recording on tape cassettes. Developed by Victor Company of Japan (JVC) in the early 1970s, it was released in Japan on September 9, 1976 and in the United States on August 23, 1977.

DVD Optical disc

DVD is a digital optical disc storage format invented and developed in 1995. The medium can store any kind of digital data and is widely used for software and other computer files as well as video programs watched using DVD players. DVDs offer higher storage capacity than compact discs while having the same dimensions.

Before "Some Folks", a short medley was performed as the dancers danced in their skeleton costumes. The medley consisted of "Halo of Flies" (from Cooper's Killer album), "The Black Widow", and "Didn't We Meet" (which would be released on Cooper's next album, Alice Cooper Goes to Hell ).

<i>Killer</i> (Alice Cooper album) 1971 studio album by Alice Cooper

Killer is the fourth studio album by the Alice Cooper band, released in November 1971. The album reached number 21 on the Billboard 200 album chart, and the two singles "Under My Wheels" and "Be My Lover" made the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

<i>Alice Cooper Goes to Hell</i> 1976 studio album by Alice Cooper

Alice Cooper Goes to Hell is the second solo album by Alice Cooper, released in 1976. A continuation of Welcome to My Nightmare as it continues the story of Steven, this concept album was written almost exclusively by Cooper with guitar player Dick Wagner and producer Bob Ezrin.

Track listing

  1. Opening credits - The Awakening
  2. Welcome To My Nightmare
  3. Years Ago
  4. No More Mr. Nice Guy
  5. Years Ago (reprise)
  6. I'm Eighteen
  7. Some Folks
  8. Cold Ethyl
  9. Only Women Bleed
  10. Years Ago (reprise)
  11. Billion Dollar Babies
  12. Devil's Food
  13. The Black Widow
  14. Steven
  15. Welcome to My Nightmare (reprise)
  16. Escape
  17. School's Out
  18. Department of Youth
  19. End credits - Only Women Bleed (alternate version)

Personnel

Richard Allen "Dick" Wagner was an American rock music guitarist, songwriter and author best known for his work with Alice Cooper, Lou Reed, and KISS. He also fronted his own Michigan-based bands, The Frost and The Bossmen.

Steve Hunter American musician

Stephen John Hunter is an American guitarist, primarily a session player. He has worked with Lou Reed and Alice Cooper, acquiring the moniker "The Deacon". Hunter first played with Mitch Ryder's Detroit, beginning a long association with record producer Bob Ezrin who has said Steve Hunter has contributed so much to rock music in general that he truly deserves the designation of "Guitar Hero". Steve Hunter has played some of the greatest riffs in rock history - that first slamming solo that rings in Aerosmith's "Train Kept A Rollin'", the acoustic intro on Peter Gabriel's "Solsbury Hill" and he wrote the legendary intro interlude that made Lou Reed's live version of "Sweet Jane" Reed's first gold record.

Prakash John is a Canadian rock & rhythm 'n blues bassist.

See also

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References