In my quest to see great shows on Broadway that we don’t have in the UK, I found myself at TKTS Times Square picking up some tickets for the Addams Family. As a quick aside, TKTS in the US is actually a lot better than in the UK, with many more discounts available. My Addams Family tickets were $70 down from $140 and were great Orchestra seats 🙂
The show is described as following on the official Website. “THE ADDAMS FAMILY features an original story. It’s every parent’s nightmare. Your little girl has suddenly become a young woman, and what’s worse, has fallen deliriously in love with a sweet, smart young man from a respectable family. Yes, Wednesday Addams, the ultimate princess of darkness, has a “normal” boyfriend, and for parents Gomez and Morticia, it’s a shocking development that turns the Addams house upside down when they are forced to host a dinner for the young man and his parents.” (http://www.theaddamsfamilymusical.com/about.php)
Anyhow, on with the review. I’m a great lover of Andrew Lippa’s music, especially the Wild Party, so I had high hopes for the music in the show and wasn’t disappointed. The songs are catchy, move the show along at a great pace and showcase the vocal talents of the fantastic cast. I particularly liked the opening number “When You’re an Addams” and later in the show, Wednesday’s song “Pulled”.
Each cast member was excellent in their role, and particular mentions go to Bebe Neuwirth who played Morticia and Nathan Lane as Gomez. Nathan was absolutely hysterical in his role and was everything I expected the character to be after being a great fan of the TV version and the original Addams Family cartoons. Bebe was beautifully dark and sophisticated in her role as Morticia. Every movement she made reflected the much loved character perfectly and although her vocals are not the best, her nasally tone was perfect for this role. My favourite character however, which is slightly bias as I already have a lot of love for this actress, was Grandma. Played by Jackie Hoffman, every single moment that she was on stage was fantastically funny. There was a moment in the first half where she actually managed to corpse the whole cast. Once everyone had calmed down she came out with “I think I peed” and caused everyone to fall into hysterics again. I have a feeling this was improvised, but forgive me if not. I have never seen anyone like Jackie Hoffman before and don’t think I ever will again. Genius.
In supporting roles, I very much enjoyed Krysta Rodriguez’s performance as Wednesday and Carolee Carmello as Alice Beineke, the mother of the boy Wednesday is in love with. All in all, the show had an excellent supporting and ensemble cast with all of my favourite characters appearing, from Lurch to Uncle Fester. Much to my surprise, the show also featured a bit of puppetry, including a very clever spot in which a tassel was sliced from the red curtain. This was pretty standard until the tassel got up and walked off stage, only to appear and reattach itself later.
The set was fantastic in this show. I didn’t really know what to expect, as the Addams Family house is so iconic in how it looks in the cartoon strip. I am happy to say, though, that Phelim McDermott and Julian Crouch did an excellent job in bringing the house to life on stage. The way the scenes moved from one to another was flawless, with the transition between outside the house, inside the house, upstairs and downstairs being perfection.
All in all, the Addams Family is a show that I would recommend for absolutely anyone. Whether it’s your grandma, your best friend, or your little sister, there is something for everyone is this show.
I have Attached a little preview of the show here. (Video is copyrighted to its owner. I did not film this)