” I’m really glad to have been bitten by the haunt bug, though, since this is an incredibly fun way to channel my energy.”
Hello & Happy Geek O’ Ween to all our readers! This month’s Philly Geek Spotlight knows a little something about Halloween. Allow me to introduce, Kenny Witter; who is the attraction manager for Break Out at Terror Behind The Walls. Yes, Eastern State Penitentiary ‘s Terror Behind the Walls; the number 1 ranked haunted house attraction in America. Wittwer, 25, has been with TBTW for 6 seasons and an attraction manager for 4 seasons. Besides haunting: Kenny Wittwer, has worked as a science educator, escape room supervisor and plays music around Philly.
Wittwer shares with us their experience at Terror Behind The Walls, what to expect this year, their love of the spooky and what scares them.
How did you become involved with Terror Behind the Walls?
I first became involved with Terror Behind The Walls in 2013. I was working as an educator at The Franklin Institute, and some of my co-workers were telling me about working at TBTW. They said that I was crazy and had a lot of energy, and they encouraged me to apply. I went to auditions, and I was brought onto the cast!
Is this something you always wanted to do? Have you always had a love for spooky things/horror?
I know you are the attraction manager for Break Out! But is it your favorite
It’s hard for me to pin down a favorite attraction because all of our attractions are completely unique and have their own specialized strengths. What I really love about Break Out is the unrelenting chaos; it’s an aggressive, fast-paced journey with so many disorienting twists and turns, that once you make it to the end you have no idea how you got there.
Can you describe a typical night preparing for TBTW? Do you and your coworkers feel just as anxious as the guests?
Preparing for a night of haunting at TBTW is all about waking up your body and mind. We do a lot of stretching and vocal warm-ups, workshop our scares with each other, and whatever else we need to unleash our inner beasts. It’s about turning up the excitement so our whole team can turn up the Terror.What can guests look forward to this year with TBTW?
This year, Terror Behind The Walls unveils a newly revamped iteration of a classic attraction: Infirmary. This impeccably designed attraction takes the fear of hospitals to a whole new level, with menacing medical staff sharpening their scalpels to transform visitors into patients. Infirmary is one of six action-packed attractions included with admission; tickets start at $19 and are on sale at TerrorBehindTheWalls.com.What advice would you give anyone looking to get into this field?
For anyone looking to get involved in the haunted attraction industry, I say go for it! Come to an audition if you want to try acting; you don’t need formal acting experience, just have big movements and lots of energy. If acting isn’t your thing, then there are so many other ways to get involved too. It takes a huge team to pull off a haunted house: tech crews, makeup artists, costume designers, hair stylists, retail staff—haunting has a home for everyone.
Since its Geek O’ Ween on All Geek to Me, I’m going to ask some Halloween related questions. Are you afraid of anything?
I’m terrified of drowning. I’ve never been a good swimmer, and while physics says otherwise, I’m always worried that I’ll just sink right to the bottom.What was your favorite Halloween costume you have worn in the past?