Working In a Haunted Home Has Both Perks And Drawbacks
It is possible that you have the skills to work in a haunted home.
These spooky venues where actors pretending to be goblins or ghouls terrorize paying customers are growing in number. They have become a sub-genre of our economy that employs thousands across the country.
According to one industry association, there are 2,000 haunted homes in the United States. This does not include Halloween-themed charity events and the 300 haunted attractions at amusement parks like Disney’s Haunted Mansion (DIS) World.
These include the haunted house, haunted hayride, and classic haunted house. There are also newer phenomena such as the zombie run. Customers are chased by hungry zombies through a carnivalofhorrors maze.
These aren’t really monsters. All of them are paid, workers.
According to Amy Holliman, human resources and creative director, Terror Behind the Walls, a Philadelphia theater where actors portray monsters that take over an abandoned prison, and where Zombies battle SWAT team members, employs 300 people during Halloween season.
Actors and makeup artists make $10.88 an hour. The jobs are part-time and seasonal, as is the rest of the industry. Tickets range in price from $20 to $45.
Online applications require skills such as puppetry, stilt-walking, and chainsaw use, as well as urban acrobatics, which is known collectively as parkour.
People are scared by thousands of actors like this one at the New York Haunted Hayride.
Ten Thirty-One Productions founder and CEO Melissa Carbone hire seasonal actors as ghouls or monsters.
People pay $37 to ride behind a tractor in a hay-filled trailer while being terrorized by devil worshippers and maniacal clowns at Randalls Island’s Haunted Hayride. Carbone employs 350 people.
Joseph Salvatore Knipper is one of them, and he plays Crow, a wandering face-painted monster.
He roams the “purgatory”, section of the hayride that is before nightfall, where guests can enter under an archway made out of jack-o-lanterns. According to him, a pregnant woman was so afraid of him when she saw him, she ran away and refused to go on the ride.
He said, “Right now, I’m a Health Care Recruitment, which is something I know to be an unusual day job for an actor.”
Carbone, an ex-executive for Clear Channel, founded a haunted house ride in Los Angeles in 2009. It has since grown. She convinced Mark Cuban, a former executive for Clear Channel, to invest $2 million in her venture.
She said, “It is literally a passion.” “I love horror. These live immersive worlds are my passion.”
Ten Thirty-One has many events throughout California, including Ghost Ship (an interactive haunted cruise with cocktails) and Great Horror Campout (which caters to clients who have extreme tastes).
They pay $119 to stay overnight at a Los Angeles park. There they are tortured by horror movie actors and raided. Carbone stated that guests who participate in more extreme events are buried alive. Carbone said, “I want to be with my mommy.”
How do you get a job at the New York Haunted Hayride as a Monster Job? Acting skills are the most important.
Haunted houses are becoming darker in popularity. Adventurous masochists will pay to visit dungeons, where they are chained, stripped, humiliated, and even subject to simulated waterboarding.
Joshua Randall, who cofounded Blackout in New York in 2009, said that there is a lot to be controlled and that he has used many types of toilets. He has expanded Blackout’s immersive horror show to other locations, including Los Angeles. And he does it all year round, not just on Halloween.
Prices vary depending on the show, but range between $40 and $135. Randall stated that he is looking for specific skills to play the roles of the torturers.
He said that therapists and psychoanalysts are often hired because they enjoy watching how it all unfolds. We prefer intelligent, responsible people capable of achieving what we want, rather than traditional haunted houses that scream and eat your brains.
Actor Beth Stranathan from Los Angeles decided to join Blackout after purchasing a ticket. She was forced to endure simulated waterboarding and was told to remove her clothes and sing “Happy Birthday!” to anyone she couldn’t see.
She said, “I did it once as a guest and it was a lot of fun.” “When I was done, I asked, ‘Do we need actors?’
She is now a Blackout actor and puts guests through sensory deprivation.
She said that people enjoy extremes and she agreed with her.