Thursday night at Manchester, Tennessee's Bonnaroo festival included a Cinema Tent screening of The Rocky Horror Picture Show (preceded by a live performance of the Rocky Horror soundtrack by the Polyphonic Spree). But another Bonnaroo Cinema screening on Thursday was so awesome, it's possible that a new-school celluloid musical may soon usurp Rocky Horror and become THE must-see midnight-madness movie.
That movie, dear readers, was R. Kelly's harrowing, hip-hoperatic tale of passion and betrayal, Trapped in the Closet.
Shortly after 2am on Thursday night/Friday morning, Trapped fanatics and curious lookie-loos wandered into the Bonnaroo Cinema, at which point the event's emcee, Alamo Drafthouse creative director Henri Mazza, began handing out audience-participation props: spatulas (to brandish during every scene featuring Rosy the nosy neighbor); water pistols (for every mention of R. Kelly's Sylvester character's Beretta); and of course, condoms printed with Trapped's most genius lyric, "Oh my God, a rubber, rubber, rubber, rubber..."
"How many of you have never seen Trapped in the Closet?" Henri asked. When a dozen or so audience members gingerly raised their hands, he shouted back, "F*** you! F*** you! It is the greatest contribution to mankind. The invention of the wheel, the invention of fire, putting a man on the moon, and Trapped in the Closet…this is the trajectory of culture. Trapped in the Closet is what all art was meant to be. This is what Renoir was thinking about when he was painting, like, 200 years ago."
Following a brief booty-poppin' dance party to R. Kelly's classic videos to get the audience in the proper frame of mind, the Cinema Tent screened the first 22 chapters of Trapped...all with phonetic subtitles, so that the less familiar spectators who'd just been chewed out by Henri could easily sing along.
And it was, well, just about the raddest thing that happened at Bonnaroo on Thursday. Maybe even radder than Paul McCartney's surprise soundcheck. R. Kelly, the man himself, is scheduled to play Bonnaroo on Saturday night...but he's going to have a hard time topping this.
Watch Yahoo! Music's Bonnaroo livestream, from Friday 2pm to Sunday 10:15pm CT, in the player below:
For more Bonnaroo reportage, check out Yahoo! Music's 2013 Summer Music Guide.