A Look in Pictures at Lucha VaVOOM’s Halloween Spectacular

Lucha VaVOOM’s Halloween Spectacular at the Mayan Theater featuring Brooke Candy.

We arrived at The Mayan not long before the theater opened for the first night’s performance of Lucha VaVOOM’s Halloween Spectacular. We then ascended to the balcony seeking a perfect site to enjoy the show and nest for photos. The Luchadores’ ring was below us, foretelling the carnivalesque mayhem and shenanigans that was awaiting us for the Halloween themed performance.

The evening was hosted by Blaine Capatch with special guest hosts Karen Kilgariff (who with Georgia Hardstark, co-hosts iTunes’ number one comedy podcast, “My Favorite Murder”), and Andy Richter (Conan O’Brien’s sidekick). All three of them are well known for their comedic and improvisational skills. In previous Lucha VaVOOM shows, Patton Oswald and Jack Black have filled in as guest announcers and comedic relief for one of LA’s signature and most fun party. I haven’t seen Karen perform before, but if she pals around with Georgia, I knew she was going to be cool. My love for Andy goes way back, and we had a chance to chat a few years ago; he’s naturally funny. I knew we were in for some laughs and good times for Wednesday night’s show.

Lucha VaVOOM’s Halloween Spectacular at the Mayan Theater featuring Brooke Candy.

I would think a lot of people are familiar with Lucha VaVOOM’s format, but if you’re not, it’s three hours filled with Lucha Libre mayhem and magic, featuring explosive rivalries, plus costumed and colorful antics. Each bout is followed by super sexy entertainment like a pole dance or burlesque performance, and comedic breaks. The comedy is performed by talented comedians who pepper the fights with salacious commentary and quirky jabs. Lucia VaVOOM is then closed out with a musical performance, or so it was that night.

Lucha VaVOOM’s Halloween Spectacular at the Mayan Theater featuring Brooke Candy.

The first bout was with the human earthquake machine Sismo, Pinatita, Dirty Sanchez, and Chupacabra. Pinatita and Chupacabra were all that you could imagine in a Luchador with some very over the top costumes. There were pranks and hijinx, impressive dives and dirty tricks. So if you’re going to have a Luchador named Dirty Sanchez, you know things are going to get messy ,and they did. Everyone in the Mayan “Ewwed” when Dirty Sanchez made his foulest move, which then gave way to awkward and inappropriate hilarity.

Brynn Route followed the bout with a stunning pole dance performance that swung and swirled. Michelle L’amour and Bryona Ashly both offered pleasurable performances between the second and third bouts. Michelle L’amour put together one of the best burlesque performances I’ve seen. It was beautiful, sexual, and had a lot of razzle dazzle. Bryona Ashly’s burlesque highlighted her exquisite body and radiant beauty. All of these performances were show stoppers!

After photographing the first part of the show, I went up to the balcony and shot with a telephoto lens from above. We witnessed Bryona Ashly’s show from this vantage point, which was then followed by a bout featuring Los Crazy Chickens, El Mariachi Loco Saltador and Li’l Cholo. Los Crazy Chickens were zombie chicken and thus crazy. Loco Saltador loved the music and couldn’t help but break out in to dance when the mood hit him. Li’l Cholo, well you know, he’s a homie and gangsta–his thing was about keeping the home turf. There were a lot of laughs and absolute silliness that night. Everyone enjoyed the show.

Lucha VaVOOM’s Halloween Spectacular at the Mayan Theater featuring Brooke Candy.

The last two bouts were broken up by a Halloween costume contest and a surprise marriage proposal. Ultimately, a Frida Kahlo costume won, and the young lady of the Dia de Los Muertos couple said yes to the proposal. The crowd swooned, and the games were once again on.

The next bouts featured Dr. Maldad, Nurse Ratchet and Taya Valkyrie, and Joey Ryan squaring off, followed by Soberano Jr., Rey Horus Tijuana, and Mango, plus de Dr. Wagner battling for dominance of the ring. These were all tag-team matches, and I found with each show the Luchadors were progressively more acrobatic and had crazier feats of strength and wrestling. At the end, the energy was super ramped up and bodies were flying out into the seats. Security was busy getting the fans positioned out of the way of oncoming, gloriously fit bodies sailing effortlessly through the air in their direction. I should mention here: kids don’t try this at home. They were totally pro and they pulled off some crazy feats of strength and agility. All you had to do is look at Andy Ruchter’s expressive face while all of the wackiness was going on to know it was crazy!

After the last victory round by our heroes and villains, it was time to get a hyper sexed-up boogie shakedown by the notorious tatted up gender-morphing rabble-rousing ingenue, Brooke Candy with her new song “FMU” from Exorcism. She closed the show in style. It was kooky and nutty, with a surprise twist befitting Lucha VaVOOM. After Brooke had set the stage on fire –figuratively speaking–and ears were ringing from her performance of FMU, sassy lady wrestlers mounted the stage–and it was on! Both Luchadoras took on Brooke in a serious no-holds-barred smackdown. When the Luchadoras got their hands on her for one giant body slam, Brooke was out and the Luchadoras had a take-no-prisoner attitude. It was a great way to end over two hours of rivalrous and rebellious fun! Lucha VaVOOM, Lucha VaVOOM, Lucha VaVOOM!

The next LA Lucha VaVOOM is slated for Valentine’s Day. So prepare your hearts for a night of revelrous naughtiness, and let love (or something like it) bloom come February.

Billy Bennight

About Billy Bennight

Billy Bennight is a writer, photographer and wardrobe stylist with expertise and years of experience in these disciplines. His musical youth started as a Punk Rocker and has expanded into exploring many genres of music, with an keen interest in art, fashion, photography and writing. He shoots celebrity events and red carpets for The Photo Access and ZUMA Press. He is a member of the Los Angeles Art Association. His images have been published in The Los Angeles Times, People Magazine, Wall Street Journal and Vanity Fair. He's very engaged in life. You can follow him on his Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/billybennightartist and on Instagram and Twitter @billybennight
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