The Addams Family – The Musical

I never actually watched The Addams Family as a child; I’ve never seen any of the films. But I love a good musical, so headed down to the New Wimbledon Theatre, where the touring production of Andrew Lippa’s The Addams Family – The Musical was being performed.

The plot, such as it is, involves daughter Wednesday falling in love with a ‘normal’ boy and the impending dinner in which her family and his will meet for the first time. Gomez, entrusted by his daughter with a secret, worries about the effect this will have on Morticia, while their son Pugsley fears that his sister’s new relationship will take her away from him. In the meantime, Uncle Fester has loosed all the family ancestors throughout the mansion in the hope that they will somehow help (although they seem only to provide an excuse for an onstage chorus).

Despite the thin plot, I found the musical hugely appealing, largely because of the memorable music. ‘Death Is Just Around the Corner’, sung by Morticia (an excellent Samantha Womack), was a particular favourite, and Carrie Hope Fletcher showed off her amazing voice in Wednesday’s anthems ‘Pulled’ and ‘Crazier Than You’. The cast was also very strong, including a superb Cameron Blakely as Gomez and Les Dennis as Uncle Fester. Valda Aviks as Grandma was also very good.

Diego Pitarch’s set was effective, particularly the dramatic mansion gates, and there were some fun effects in the form of a ‘moving picture’.

I found the musical very funny; I would have liked it to be a bit darker, maybe, but this seems churlish considering I did really enjoy it. I took a friend with me who is an Addams Family fan but who doesn’t particularly like musicals, and she really enjoyed it, which I count as a win. I definitely recommend catching this fun show on tour.

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The Addams Family

I saw The Addams Family at the Brookside Theatre in Romford, an amateur production that I nevertheless enjoyed hugely. The musical, with music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa and a book by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice, picks up the story of the famous American Gothic family: the plotline sees an older Wednesday seeking her parents’ approval for her marriage to “normal” boy Lucas. Gomez and Morticia find it hard to accept their daughter is growing up, Pugsley is worried his sister won’t have time for him any more, and the families of Wednesday and her fiancé couldn’t be more different – will everything work out?

Being reasonably familiar with the Addams Family films, I found it hard to get my head around the idea of them singing on stage. However, once I got used to it, I found the songs worked well within the context of the story, and several are particularly catchy. Despite being an amateur production, the performances were strong, with Jai and Harri Sepple a good Gomez and Morticia, and David Phipps-Davis a superb Uncle Fester. I was particularly impressed with Sophie Kingsley’s performance as Wednesday: her vocals would not be out of place on a West End stage.

An entertaining bunch of extras – playing the long-dead Addams family members from different eras – made the most of some superb choreography. Altogether a highly entertaining evening.