Haunted Attraction Magazine Article:
Jack Neiberlein was the Assistant
Director at Terror on Church Street. The following appears
courtesy of HAUNTED ATTRACTION magazine:
I began my tenure with Terror On Church Street in November of
1991 as an actor in the show. I recall my wife's first question
being "Is this a real job?" At first, I was not sure it was,
but I was sure that I was being paid to have a lot of fun. I
loved the immediate gratification that I got from the guests'
In January of 1992, when David Clevinger became the Director of
the show, my life began to change. David sensed my love of the
genre and showed an appreciation of my performances. Being a
life long Horror fan, I was thrilled when in September of 1992,
I became the Assistant Director of Terror on Church Street.
One of my many fond memories of Terror, was the annual Street
Party To Die For. With thirty live actors and two solid blocks
of outdoor entertainment this party was always an extraordinary
event! As the masses of people arrived, I felt like a mad
scientist watching his creation come to life. Even though the
change of seasons is barely noticeable in Orlando, every year in
late October I would swear that I could smell the scent of
dried leaves perfume the air.
My pride in Terror on Church Street runs deep, especially when
it comes to cast members. I was gifted with the great fortune
of auditioning, hiring and directing dozens of talented actors
and actresses. Their enthusiasm and dedication was infectious
and they were truly the backbone of the attraction. When the
first guest walked through the door, I knew that the pure energy
and dazzling performance that was given by each cast member was
going to floor him. On a nightly basis, visitor reaction showed
the effectiveness of the casts' talents. Alan Ostrander,
Terror's exceptional make up artist, designed and applied
unique, custom-built make up and appliances night after night
and the level of quality never wavered. His outstanding
contribution to the look and feel of the attraction cannot be
overstated and was a primary reason why Terror shined among
Terror brought the spirit of Halloween to the masses 364 nights
a year in a town where the leaves do not even change color in
autumn. We terrorized people from around the world. Frequently
entertaining guests from Europe, Asia and South America who
returned year after year just to experience Terror on Church
Street. Word-of-mouth response was phenomenal. Reluctant guests
were sometimes offered a money back guarantee by myself, when
they questioned the quality of the show and its ability to
frighten. We always lived up to the challenge. I do not recall
giving a single refund for not being able to scare someone.
As Director of Operations, David Clevinger brought Terror and
the entire the industry to a new level. His set designs have a
classic, architectural quality and his level of detail left an
impression on everyone who experienced them or had the pleasure
of seeing them built. He gave enormous freedoms to the staff,
and generosity was greatly appreciated. His willingness to give
untested talent a break is a testament to his wisdom and
Was Terror on Church Street the best Haunted Attraction ever? I
don't think that this is for me to judge. I do know that some
visitors enjoyed Terror so much that they tried to copy it in
their own town. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and
this is a testament to Terror's greatness. I personally feel
that the key to Terror's success was the collaboration of the
cast. The strong team effort helped to propel guests' fears to
new heights on a nightly basis. As with most entertainment
ventures, egos occasionally caused disturbances, but in the end
our goal was always clear: Provide a high-quality Haunted
Attraction, fill it with talented actors, entertain the guests,
and have fun!
Terror on Church Street was a unique experience for me. I was
paid to be creative and work with imaginative people. I learned
much about myself and the wonderful people with whom I worked.
In a few years, when my son asks me what I did at Terror on
Church Street, I will tell him that Daddy ran the Spook House.
Not just any Spook House, the one that people came across
oceans to see and talked about for years after it closed.
Thank you Terror on Church Street for one wild ride.