Fall into the season with “The Addams Family”


Maddie Houseknecht, Staff Writer

They’re creepy and they’re kooky, mysterious and spooky, they’re altogether ooky, they’re the Addams Family. From Oct. 26 to Oct. 28, this grim family will grace the stage during the Stage Left performance of “The Addams Family Musical.”

“The Addams Family Musical” premiered on Broadway in 2010 to rave reviews and a cult following. During its original Broadway run, theater teacher Connie Rose caught a glimpse at what might be the perfect fall musical.

¨I saw ‘The Addams Family Musical’ on Broadway and thought it was amusing,” Rose said. “It fits as a fall play around Halloween and the kids in Stage Left like it.”

It’s well-known that the family deals with all things dark and dreary, but in “The Addams Family Musical,” one theme is oddly present: love. The story centers around Wednesday Addams (senior Elizabeth Wheless) trying to hide her engagement to Lucas Beineke (junior Ariel Mejia) from her family. Throughout the show, this secret causes mayhem and wild antics.

“Keeping secrets is so unlike Wednesday,” Wheless said. “She’s so scared about how her family will react to her engagement, that she panics and ends up in a web of lies. Wednesday shows a different side to her personality in this musical and I’m ecstatic to portray her.”

One character who has dominant influence over the musical is Uncle Fester, played by senior Warren Brown. Fester is the only character to directly address the audience, or “break the fourth wall.” This area of his personality is what sets Fester apart from the rest of the family and makes him into a sort of narrator towards the audience.

“Fester is a spunky guy,” Brown said. “He’s unlike any character I’ve ever played because he is so out there. He has no filter. I relate to him.”

Fester doesn’t act alone, though. Ancestors of the Addams family from different points in time help Fester to further the plot and character development. Each Ancestor had to create his or her own back-story and character depending on his or her time period. Most of the Ancestors are freshmen in their first high school production, and the experience is both nerve-wracking and invigorating.

“I am excited to work with all the amazing actors and actresses to bring the [Addams Family] to life,” freshman Kylie Frazee said.

With about six weeks to get the musical stage-ready, Rose and the cast had to get very creative with sets and props. Most props were either homemade with unconventional materials, and the set itself was painted and built by the cast and students in construction classes. Without fancy sets and lighting effects, Rose relied heavily on the actors’ ability to convey the story.

“It has a fairly simple set, but really fun characters and costumes,” Rose said.

“The Addams Family Musical” has been adapted to fit the school’s stage, and through the transitions and simplifications of set, tech and props, the heart and characters themselves have not changed. In the middle of all of the doom and gloom lies a story about love, relationships, and most importantly, family. It’s set to be a creepy, kooky, spooky Halloween weekend.