First and foremost a standing ovation and a “Bravo!” to the Broward Performing Arts new sound system. It has been a long time since each spoken and sung word in a musical was as clear and understandable as it was at this performance of “The Addams Family”!


From the first three “Snap! Snap! Snap!” anyone familiar with the Addams family from the New Yorker cartoons to the TV shows and movies will be right at home. For those not familiar with them you will be after the first song “When You’re an Addams” is finished.


Wednesday (Jennifer Fogarty) the child of Gomez (Jesse Sharp) and Morticia (Keleen Snowgren) Addams has invited Lucas (Bryan Welnicki), to whom Wednesday is secretly engaged, and his parents Mal (Mark Poppleton) and Alice (Blair Anderson) Beineke  to meet hers. Wednesday has told her father about the engagement but has sworn him to secrecy to not tell her mother. Gomez finds himself between a rock and  a hardstone as he has never lied to his wife and feels he can’t betray his daughter.  Knowing the Addams, when Wednesday asks the family to act ‘normal’ around the  Beinekes, who are from Ohio, you know it is going to be a rough, and funny, night.


In the opening number the audience gets to meet the complete Addams family and what their idea of normal might be. The brother of Gomez, Uncle Fester (Shaun Rice) is in love with the moon, no one is sure what side the 102 year old Grandma (Amanda Bruton) is related to while Wednesday brother Pugsley (Jeremy Todd Shinder) is afraid when she gets married she won’t be around to torture him anymore. And then there is the all around butler/house man Lurch (Don Olson) while the Addams Ancestors who have come back for one night for the annual gathering of the family hover all over the sets.


“The Addams Family”, since it premiered  in Chicago in 2009, then Broadway in 2010 and touring since 2011, has consistently gone through changes whether it be songs by Andrew Lippa or the book by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice, and has added zingers regarding current people and places in the news. The songs by Lippa seem to be takeoffs of other songwriters and at one point I thought Fester’s song “But Love” was going to turn into Billy Flynn’s, “All I Care About” from “Chicago” but you will always have the snaps! There is strong backup by the 7 piece orchestra lead by Nolan Bonvouloir.


The cast is uniformly good with Fogarty’s Wednesday standing out with a strong voice. The only weak character, and this seems to be the fault of the direction, is the part of Morticia. I have seen this role played by 2 different actresses and both seemed nervous on stage and unsure of their dancing, consequently the big tango number doesn’t work as they look as if they are counting each step in their head before doing it.


“The Addams Family” may not be a classic Broadway show but it is for all the kids of any age and except for a few risque moves and lines it is a show for the whole family.


First act: 1 hour and 8 minutes  Intermission: 17 minutes Second act: 53 minutes

Next stops: 4/22 Sarasota  4/23: Tallahassee  4/24 Pensacola  then Michigan


Posted April 13, 2013 by greatmartin in Uncategorized

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