The Addams Family (musical)

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The Addams Family
A New Musical Comedy
The Addams Family musical poster 2010 Nathan Lane Bebe Neuwirth.jpg
One of 2010 theatrical release posters
MusicAndrew Lippa
LyricsAndrew Lippa
BookMarshall Brickman
Rick Elice
Basiscomic strip The Addams Family
by Charles Addams
Productions2009 Chicago tryout
2010 Broadway
2011 North America tour
2013 US/Asia tour
2017 UK tour
2021 UK tour

The Addams Family is a musical comedy with music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa and book by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice. The show is based upon The Addams Family characters created by Charles Addams in his single-panel gag cartoons, which depict a ghoulish American family with an affinity for all things macabre. Although numerous film and television adaptations of Addams' cartoons exist, the musical is the first stage show based on the characters.[1] The Addams Family is also the first show produced by Elephant Eye Theatricals.[2]

After a tryout in Chicago in 2009,[3] the musical opened on Broadway in April 2010. The original cast featured Nathan Lane as Gomez and Bebe Neuwirth as Morticia.[4] The production closed on December 31, 2011, and a revised national tour of North America began in September 2011.

The Addams Family won several awards during its Broadway run including a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Set Design,[5] an Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Set Design,[6] and the 2010 Drama League Award for Distinguished Achievement in Musical Theatre Award (presented to Nathan Lane).[7] The show was nominated for two Tony Awards, among other nominations.[8]

The UK premiere of The Addams Family was announced on 5 September 2016 and opened at the Edinburgh Festival Theatre in Edinburgh in April 2017 before embarking on a major UK tour.


In 2007, the producers announced that they had obtained the rights from the Tee and Charles Addams Foundation to create a musical adaptation of The Addams Family for Broadway, and they anticipated an opening during the 2009–2010 season after an out-of-town tryout. This was the first time that Charles Addams' comic creations were licensed to serve as the basis for a stage production.[1] The musical's lead producers were Stuart Oken and Roy Furman.[9] In addition to Oken and Furman, Vivek Tiwary also joined The Addams Family musical's team of producers.[10] The Addams Foundation reportedly retained control over the show's content and insisted that, instead of drawing the plot from The Addams Family television series or films, the production team devise an original musical based solely on Addams' cartoons.[11]

Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice were engaged to write the book, and Andrew Lippa composed the show's score. Improbable theatre founders Julian Crouch and Phelim McDermott were the original directors and designers, with choreography by Sergio Trujillo.[1] Crouch said that, when brainstorming ideas for the overall appearance of the show, he and McDermott turned to the character of Uncle Fester for inspiration, asking themselves, "If Fester was going to do a Broadway show, what kind of Broadway show would he do?"[12] The partners described the result as "an off-beat take on 19th Century Gothic".[12]

Some changes were made after the Chicago tryout. The songs "Clandango", "Passionate and True", "At Seven", and "Second Banana" were replaced with "When You're an Addams", "Where Did We Go Wrong?", "Morticia", and "Just Around the Corner". The songs "One Normal Night", "Full Disclosure, Part 2", "Crazier Than You", "Move Toward the Darkness", and "Tango De Amor" were rewritten.[citation needed]



The show began previews on Broadway at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre on March 8, 2010, with an official opening night of April 8.[13][14] The production was originally estimated to cost $10 million,[15] but more recent reports give the budget as $15 million.[16]

All of the cast from the Chicago tryout transferred to Broadway. The creative team included direction by McDermott and Crouch, choreography by Trujillo, lighting by Natasha Katz, puppets by Basil Twist, special effects by Gregory Meeh, and orchestrations by Larry Hochman.[17]

The show won both the Drama Desk Award and Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Set Design but received no other major awards.[18] However, it did win the Audience Awards for Favorite New Broadway Musical, Favorite Performance by a Featured Actor in a Broadway Musical (Kevin Chamberlin), Favorite Breakthrough Performance (Krysta Rodriguez), and Favorite Onstage Pair (Nathan Lane and Bebe Neuwirth).[19]

A May 2011 article in Playbill reported that the show had by then grossed over $62 million.[20] The show celebrated its 500th performance on June 16, 2011.[21] Playbill reported in May 2011 that "plans for other international productions are currently underway."[20]

Cassandra Peterson was in talks to take over the role of Morticia until the producers decided to close the show at the end of the year.[22]

The Broadway production closed on December 31, 2011, after 35 previews and 722 performances.[23]

National tours[edit]

A United States tour began in September 2011 at the Mahalia Jackson Theater for the Performing Arts in New Orleans.[24] Tour stops included Atlanta, Miami, Boston, Hartford, Saint Paul, Philadelphia, Dallas, Pittsburgh, Buffalo, Los Angeles, Kansas City, Orlando, Florida, and San Diego. Most of these cities include those that are members of Elephant Eye Theatricals and worked on producing The Addams Family on Broadway and tour.[25][26] The musical was also performed in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, at the Toronto Centre for the Arts during November 16–27, 2011.[27][28] Douglas Sills and Sara Gettelfinger played Gomez and Morticia Addams, respectively.[29] The touring version has "a new central plot conflict, new or revised or reordered songs to replace old ones, fresh orchestrations and dance where necessary."[30] the US Tour finished in July of 2012

A second tour of North America, produced by Phoenix Entertainment, launched in 2013, starring Jennifer Fogarty as Wednesday, KeLeen Snowgren as Morticia, Jesse Sharp as Gomez, Shaun Rice as Uncle Fester, and Sam Primack as Pugsley. After the second national tour, The Addams Family was due to tour Asia. Most, if not all, of the 2nd National Tour cast was set to perform in the Asian tour except Sam Primack as Pugsley, who was to be replaced by Connor Barth.

Return to Chicago[edit]

The Addams Family returned to Chicago in a sit-down production at Mercury Theater Chicago opening February 5, 2015, after a week of previews, and closing April 15. The production, which featured a tighter post-National Tour script and a more Chicago improv-oriented cast, was directed by L. Walter Stearns, musical directed by Eugene Dizon, and choreographed by Brenda Didier; with scene design by Bob Knuth, lighting by Nick Belley, sound by Mike Ross, costumes by Frances Maggio, and magic by Neil Tobin.

The cast featured Karl Hamilton (Gomez), Rebecca Prescott (Morticia), Harter Clingman (Uncle Fester), Amanda Hartley (Grandma), Dara Cameron (Wednesday), Brennan Dougherty (Pugsley Addams), Jeff Diebold (Lurch), Jason Grimm (Mal Beineke), Cory Goodrich (Alice Beineke), and Henry McGinniss (Lucas Beineke).

The show received unanimous rave reviews. "Comic perfection at the Mercury. It's a very good bet that The Addams Family will haunt the Mercury for months to come" (Chicago Sun-Times).[31] "Much more relaxed and infinitely funnier. Enjoyed L. Walter Stearns Mercury Theater production more than any of my previous visits with this family [including pre-Broadway tryout, Broadway, and National Tour production]. Relentless focus on laughs" (Chicago Tribune).[32] "An absolute delight! The best show I've seen so far this year" (New City Chicago).[33] The production was honored with three 2015 Jeff Award nominations[34] and won Outstanding Production—Musical—Midsize.[35]

International productions[edit]

The first international production opened in March 2012 at Teatro Renault, São Paulo, Brazil, produced by T4F with Marisa Orth and Daniel Boaventura as Morticia and Gomez, respectively. It closed in December 2012.[36] The same production started on January 10, 2013, at Vivo Rio, in Rio de Janeiro.[37][38] A Brazilian revival opened on March 10, 2022 in São Paulo at the same Teatro Renault, with Marisa Orth and Daniel Boaventura reprising their roles.

The Addams Family had its European premiere on September 29, 2012, at Östgötateatern, Norrköping, Sweden. directed by Mattias Carlsson and conducted by Johan Siberg. Starring: Petra Nielsen (Morticia), Christian Zell (Gomez), Jenny Holmgren (Wednesday), Fabian Nikolajeff/Kalle Jansson (Pugsley), Jesper Barkselius (Fester), Gunnel Samuelsson (Grandma), Jan Unestam (Lurch), Carina Söderman (Alice), Sven Angleflod (Mal) and Linus Henriksson (Lucas)[39]

The musical premiered at the Capitol Theatre in Sydney, Australia, starting in March 2013. The cast includes John Waters as Gomez Addams, Chloe Dallimore as Morticia Addams, Russell Dykstra as Uncle Fester, Teagan Wouters as Wednesday Addams and Ben Hudson as Lurch.[20][40][41][42] The show closed on June 9, 2013. It had been hoped to tour to other Australian cities but it is understood the show had struggled at the box office and those plans were cancelled.[43]

The musical began its Argentine premiere at Teatro Ópera in Buenos Aires, Argentina, starting on June 19, 2013. It was produced by T4F (Time For Fun), a Brazilian entertainment company. The cast included Gabriel Goity as Homero (Gomez), Julieta Díaz as Morticia, Santiago Ríos as Tío Lucas (Uncle Fester), Gabi Goldberg as Abuela (Grandma), Alejandro Viola as Mauricio Beineke (Mal Beineke), Dolores Ocampo as Alice Beineke, Laura Esquivel as Merlina (Wednesday), Marcelo Albamonte as Largo (Lurch), and Marco Di Mónaco as Tomás Beineke (Lucas Beineke). Four children played Pericles (Pugsley): Kevin La Bella, Jorge Chamorro, Tadeo Galvé, and Valentino Grizutti.

The Finnish premiere of The Addams Family took place in Tampereen Työväen Teatteri, also known as the TTT-Theatre of Tampere, on October 4, 2013. Directed by Tiina Puumalainen, visually designed by Teppo Järvinen, and conducted by Pekka Siistonen, the production featured a cast of Puntti Valtonen (Gomez), Eriikka Väliahde (Morticia), Laura Alajääski (Wednesday), Jukka Nylund (Pugsley), Matti Pussinen-Eloranta (Mumma / Grandma), Samuli Muje (Fester), Minna Hokkanen (Alice), Mika Honkanen (Mal), Juha-Matti Koskela (Lucas), and Sami Eerola (Lurch).

Los Locos Addams opened on October 31, 2013, at Teatro Marsano in Lima, Peru, directed by Domenico Poggi. It was produced by La Gran Manzana. The cast featured Diego Bertie as Homero (Gomez), Fiorella Rodriguez as Morticia, Nicolás Fantinato as Tío Lucas (Uncle Fester), Patricia Portocarrero and Fiorella Rojas as Abuela (Grandma), Gina Yangali as Merlina (Wednesday), Gustavo Mayer as Largo (Lurch), Luis Baca as Walter (Lucas) Beineke, Trilce Cavero as Alice Beineke, Miguel Alvarez as Mal Beineke, and Giuseppino Castellano and Brando Gallesi as Pericles (Pugsley).

The Addams Family was staged at the Meralco Theater in Manila, the Philippines, by Atlantis Productions, Inc., from November 15 to December 1, 2013. Cast members included Arnell Ignacio (Gomez), Eula Valdez (Morticia), K-La Rivera (Wednesday), and Ryan Gallagher (Lucas).[44][45]

The Addams Family debuted in the German language in July 2014 in Merzig and closed in September 2014. That December it was staged in Bremen. The cast included theatre and television actors Uwe Kröger (Gomez), Edda Petri (Morticia), Jana Stelley (Wednesday), Enrico DePieri (Uncle Fester), Anne Welte (Grandma), Noah Walczuch (Pugsley), Ethan Freeman (Mal Beineke), April Hailer (Alice Beineke), and Dominik Hees (Lucas Beineke). The German cast also produced an album, published in December 2014.[46]

The Addams Family premiered in Milan, Italy, in October 2014. The cast included Elio and Geppi Cucciari as Gomez and Morticia. Costumes were designed by stylist Antonio Marras. Musical supervisor Cinzia Pennesi, Set Design Guido Fiorato, Light Design Marco Filibeck. The Italian version was directed by Giorgio Gallione and translated and adapted by Italian writer Stefano Benni. Other cast members included Pierpaolo Lopatriello (Uncle Fester), Giulia Odetto (Wednesday), Leonardo Garbetta, Emanuele Ghizzinardi, and Giacomo Nasta (Pugsley), Sergio Mancinelli (Grandma), Filippo Musenga (Lurch), Paolo Avanzini (Lucas Beineke), Clara Maselli (Alice Beineke), and Andrea Spina (Mal Beineke).

In Mexico, the show opened in October 2014 as Los Locos Addams, the name of the TV series in Mexico, starring Susana Zabaleta as Morticia, Jesús Ochoa as Homero (Gomez), Gloria Aura as Merlina (Wednesday), Miguel Ángel Pérez and Sebastián Gallegos as Pericles (Puglsey), Gerardo González as Tío Lucas (Uncle Fester), Raquel Pankowsky as Abuela (Grandma), José Roberto Pisano as Lurch, Luca Duhart as Tomás (Lucas) Beineke, Tomás Castellanos as Mauricio (Mal) Beineke, and Marisol del Olmo as Alicia (Alice) Beineke.

In France, a French-language production opened in September 2017 at Le Palace in Paris as part of their 2017–2018 season. After the last show in January 2018, the show moved to the Casino de Paris on October 7, 2018, for a limited engagement.[47]

On April 19, 2019, the premiere of the Broadway musical "The Addams Family" took place in Kyiv, on the main stage of the Kyiv National Academic Operetta Theater of Ukraine.[48]

In Malta, a production in English premiered in the Mediterranean islands by ARTHAUS in March 2020, with the Artistic Direction of Lucienne Camilleri, Musical Direction by Ryan Paul Abela, and with Stefania Grech Vella as the Executive Producer. It was presented in association with Theatrical Rights Worldwide (TRW). The production took place in Malta's Capital at the Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta.[49] About the production in Malta Andrew Lippa wrote in a Tweet on March 4, 2020; "My late father spent 6 months in Malta in 1952. He told great stories about the country and its people. So thrilled “The Addams Family” is playing there now. Life is remarkable!"[50]

The Russian premiere of the musical took place in Tyumen in city’ s repertory drama theatre on June 4, 2021.[51] Official name of the version is “Семейка Аддамс”. The production started quite successfully, theatre’s website crashed due to high number of visitors who wanted to buy ticket.[52] Roles of Morticia, Wednesday and Pugsley feature double cast, while performers for other roles have no alternates. The new production received 9 (out of 10 for the genre) nominations for the Golden Mask award, the most prestigious theater award in the country.[53]

United Kingdom[edit]

On September 5, 2016, it was announced that The Addams Family musical would embark on a major UK and Ireland tour produced by Music & Lyrics Productions,[54] with Associate Producers James Yeoburn and Stuart Matthew Price for United Theatrical, and Guy James. The production was directed by Matthew White and opened at the Edinburgh Festival Theatre on April 20, 2017. It starred Cameron Blakely as Gomez, Samantha Womack as Morticia, Les Dennis as Fester, and Carrie Hope Fletcher as Wednesday.[55] The production was directed by Matthew White, choreographed by Alistair David, with design by Diego Pitarch, sound design by Richard Brooker and lighting design by Ben Cracknell.

The UK leg of the tour finished at the Orchard Theatre in Dartford on November 4, 2017, and then the production was transferred to Singapore, where it ran at the MES Theatre from November 15 to December 3, 2017.[56]

After being postponed for more than a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a second UK and Ireland tour started on November 5, 2021 at the Theatre Royal, Nottingham, with Cameron Blakely reprising his role as Gomez, Joanne Clifton as Morticia, Scott Paige as Fester, Kingsley Morton as Wednesday, Kara Lane as Alice Beineke, Sean Kingsley as Mal Beineke and Ahmed Hamad as Lucas Beineke, and closed on April 30, 2022 at the Norwich Theatre Royal.[57]


Broadway version[edit]

Setting: The Addams Family Mansion, Central Park, New York City[58]

Act I[edit]

The ghoulish Addams family are visiting the graveyard for an annual gathering of all family members (living, dead, and undecided) to celebrate what it is to be an Addams ("When You're an Addams"). Uncle Fester stops the Ancestors' return to their graves to enlist their help. He explains that Wednesday, under protest, has invited her new (normal) boyfriend, Lucas Beineke, and his parents, Mal and Alice, to dinner. While torturing Pugsley on a rack, Wednesday admits that love is pulling her in a new direction ("Pulled"). Meanwhile, Wednesday's parents, Morticia and Gomez, worry about her changing ways ("Where Did We Go Wrong").

As the Beinekes arrive, Wednesday and Lucas instruct their families to act normal so they can all enjoy a simple dinner ("One Normal Night"). But the moment Lurch ushers the Beinekes into the mansion, tensions begin to mount. Mal wants to tear down the old house, Alice begins to spout happy poems at random, Pugsley, Fester, and Grandma fail at acting normal, and Wednesday, after wearing black for eighteen years, appears in a bright yellow dress. Later, Lucas and Wednesday, away from their families, reveal that the reason they brought their families together is to announce their marriage. Gomez and Mal share a drink where Mal is introduced to Bernice, the family's giant pet squid, and Alice admits to Morticia that her marriage to Mal has grown passionless. Morticia then hears Wednesday call her old and worries that she's getting crows feet. She turns down Gomez's request to tango, leaving him alone and unsatisfied ("Morticia"). Meanwhile, Pugsley is worried that Wednesday's love life means she won't torture him anymore and steals a truth serum from Grandma's cart, planning to slip it to Wednesday at dinner ("What If?") believing it will cause her to break up with Lucas.

At dinner, the assembly plays a variant of truth or dare the Addamses call "The Game," in which each person present reveals a secret ("Full Disclosure"). Gomez tells a story about scaring away crows and their feet, but upsets Morticia by accidentally comparing her to a goat, while Uncle Fester admits he's in love with the moon. Pugsley slips the serum into the drink, but Alice cuts in, drinks the serum and drunkenly declares her marriage to Mal a loveless mess as she reveals her misery and woe in front of everyone ("Waiting"). As Mal, humiliated, attempts to leave with his family, Wednesday announces that she and Lucas will marry, to which Lucas sheepishly agrees. Chaos engulfs both families, and Uncle Fester, trying to be helpful, instructs the Ancestors to create a sudden, terrible storm, trapping everyone in the mansion for the night ("Full Disclosure – Part 2").

Act II[edit]

During the storm, Wednesday tries to leave, but Lucas wants to stay and work things out with their families, leading the pair to have their first fight. Later, Morticia fears she is no longer relevant to her own family, and reminds herself that death is waiting for her ("Just Around The Corner"). Mal and Alice start to have a fight about their marriage at the dinner after Alice makes a poem that doesn't rhyme. Uncle Fester calls for an interlude as he plays his ukulele, singing a love song to the Moon ("The Moon and Me").

Walking out in the yard, Wednesday runs into Gomez. He is happy she's found someone to love, yet sad that his daughter is growing up ("Happy/Sad"). Wednesday is left worrying that she and Lucas are too different. Then as a show of trust, Lucas blindfolds Wednesday and lets her shoot an apple off his head with a crossbow ("Crazier Than You"). She succeeds, and the two embrace. Pugsley cannot sleep, and Morticia relaxes him a bit but he cannot bring himself to confess what he did to Alice. In the grotto, Gomez and Fester attempt to get Mal to open up about his feelings to no avail ("Let's Not Talk About Anything Else But Love"). He is ultimately kidnapped by Bernice and pulled into the sewers. Grandma, hearing the word "love", comes to sing with Gomez and Fester ("Let's Not Talk About Anything Else But Love" (reprise)). Moments after, Alice is led down to the grotto by Lurch where Mal, now back from his swim with Bernice, has learned to appreciate what he has after spending time in the arms of a passionate squid and announces he still loves Alice ("In The Arms"). Gomez now goes up to the rooftop to profess his love for Morticia ("Live Before We Die"). They kiss and begin to tango ("Tango de Amor").

With all the couples reunited, Pugsley admits to slipping the potion to Alice, but is congratulated since it brought everyone together. Uncle Fester, wearing a rocket, tells everyone he is flying off to be with the moon. As the families sing one last ballad, they are all shocked as Lurch sings out loud for the first time, just as a puff of smoke is seen on the moon, signaling Fester has just landed ("Move Toward the Darkness").

US and UK touring version[edit]

The national tours of the production changed the plot as follows. After the opening song, Uncle Fester addresses the audience directly about the love between Wednesday and Lucas, and states that the Ancestors will not be allowed to return to their graves until love prevails. Wednesday confesses her love of Lucas to Gomez but also makes him promise not to disclose her secret to Morticia until the two families all have dinner later that night. Morticia observes that Gomez is acting unusually, and this causes tension between them, especially because Morticia believes that Gomez has never lied to her before. Gomez's The Game parable is instead a variant of the Pandora's Box legend. When the dinner causes these secrets to be revealed, Morticia wonders if her marriage can be saved, and Mal and Alice also have disagreements. When Mal observes the sacrifice Lucas is willing to make to Wednesday by having the apple shot off his head, he reconciles with Alice. Gomez stops Morticia just as she is about to leave the family by reminding her that she acted the same way that Wednesday did when Morticia was younger. All plot references to the giant squid Bernice are completely removed, and some of the songs are either rearranged into new ones or completely cut altogether; most notably, the Act II song "Let's Not Talk About Anything Else But Love" is cut but portions of the lyrics are used in Act I with Fester's song "Fester's Manifesto" and a reprise titled "But Love".

Musical numbers[edit]

Chicago (Pre-Broadway)[edit]


† Not included on the original Addams Family playbill.

US Tour and current productions[edit]

† Not included on the original Broadway Cast Album.


The principal original casts of the major productions of The Addams Family.

Role Original Broadway cast Original US tour cast Original UK tour cast
Gomez Addams Nathan Lane Douglas Sills Cameron Blakely
Morticia Addams Bebe Neuwirth Sara Gettelfinger Samantha Womack
Wednesday Addams Krysta Rodriguez Cortney Wolfson Carrie Hope Fletcher
Uncle Fester Kevin Chamberlin Blake Hammond Les Dennis
Grandma Addams Jackie Hoffman Pippa Pearthree Valda Aviks
Pugsley Addams Adam Riegler Patrick D. Kennedy Grant McIntyre
Lurch Zachary James Tom Corbeil Dickon Gough
Mal Beineke Terrence Mann Martin Vidnovic Dale Rapley
Alice Beineke Carolee Carmello Crista Moore Charlotte Page
Lucas Beineke Wesley Taylor Brian Justin Crum Oliver Ormson

Notable replacements[edit]

Broadway (2010-11)

Analysis of book and music[edit]

In addition to the original characters created by Addams, the musical introduces the new roles of Mal, Alice, and Lucas Beineke, who are described as "straight arrow Midwesterners."[59] The ensemble consists of a group of Addams Family ancestors, each from a different time period.

Lippa said he wrote most of the score to match each character's personality.[60] This included giving Gomez a Flamenco-style Spanish score, Wednesday a more contemporary score, and Fester a vaudevillian score.[61] "Let's Not Talk About Anything Else but Love" is "jazzy/swingy/catchy" and "Happy/Sad" is a ballad reminiscent of Stephen Sondheim.[62]

Fester's feature "The Moon and Me" and his portion of "Full Disclosure," in which he reveals that he has fallen in love with the moon, includes quotations from Claude Debussy's "Clair de lune."

Original Broadway cast recording[edit]

The Addams Family
(Cast Recording of the Musical)
Soundtrack album by
ReleasedJune 8, 2010
RecordedApril 19, 2010
LabelDecca Broadway
ProducerAndrew Lippa

An original Broadway cast recording was produced by Decca Broadway.[63] Featuring most of the show's musical numbers, it was released on June 8, 2010, although it was available to purchase at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre from June 1, 2010.

The album was recorded on April 19, 2010, and was produced by Lippa.[64]

Track listing[65]
1."The Addams Family Theme"0:16
3."When You're an Addams"4:25
5."Where Did We Go Wrong"2:20
6."One Normal Night"4:45
8."What If?"2:06
9."Full Disclosure"2:34
11."Full Disclosure (Part 2)"1:09
12."Just Around the Corner"3:58
13."The Moon and Me"3:03
15."Crazier Than You"2:51
16."Let's Not Talk About Anything Else But Love"3:19
17."Let's Not Talk About Anything Else But Love (Reprise)"0:50
18."In The Arms"2:24
19."Live Before We Die"2:48
20."Tango de Amor"3:11
21."Move Toward the Darkness"3:58
22."Not Today"3:12

Note: "Not Today" was sung by Lippa as a bonus track for the iTunes release of the cast recording.[66]


The Variety review of the Chicago tryout said "The show [is] overcrammed and underfocused...From a structural perspective, the storytelling is all rising action followed by rapid and not really convincing resolution... it's very funny, with special nods to Chamberlin, whose ultra-corny number 'The Moon and Me' is a comic highlight, as well as to Hoffman and Lane."[67] The Chicago Sun-Times theater critic wrote a laudatory review,[68] but while the Chicago Tribune critic found the musical enjoyable, he felt "the show is hijacked by the Addamses behaving weirdly (i.e. normally)" and that Morticia's "crisis of confidence about getting old" is "a very uneasy narrative twist" and perhaps too far out of character.[69]

Reviews for the Broadway production were mixed but mostly negative (the median grade of 27 major reviews was "D+").[70] John Simon, writing in the Bloomberg News called it "A glitzy-gloomy musical in which the quick and the dead are equally full of character, especially the chorus of ancestors that exhibits wonderful esprit de corpse."[71] However, Ben Brantley in The New York Times wrote that it is "A tepid goulash of vaudeville song-and-dance routines, Borscht Belt jokes, stingless sitcom zingers and homey romantic plotlines".[72] There was general praise for the performers, particularly Nathan Lane. An Associated Press reviewer stated: "Lane, complete with a deliciously phony Spanish accent, is the hardest working actor on Broadway. Whatever they are paying him – and I hope it is a lot – he's worth the price. The actor possesses a theatrical gusto that makes the musical move whenever he is on stage."[70]

Despite many negative reviews by New York critics, it has consistently played to 100% capacity and grossed third only to Wicked and The Lion King each week since it opened in previews.[73] The New York Times reported that despite "the sort of scathing reviews that would bury most shows", the production had $851,000 in ticket sales on top of a $15 million advance sale the weekend following its opening, "huge figures for a new Broadway run". The Times attributed this success to a beloved brand-name title, nostalgia, star strength, and a top-notch marketing campaign by the producers.[3]

The post-tour return to Chicago was hailed as "triumphant" (New City Chicago),[33] and moved Hedy Weiss of the Chicago Sun-Times to issue this directive: "Note to Broadway (and not for the first time): If you want to see how to make a musical really snap into place — how to connect with an audience in that uncanny way that is so crucial for success, how to delineate characters so that we cannot help but cheer for them, and how to turn every production number into a giddy explosion of song and dance — pay a visit to the ideally intimate Mercury Theater Chicago."[31]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Original Broadway production[edit]

Year Award Category Nominee Result
2010 Tony Award Best Original Score Andrew Lippa Nominated
Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical Kevin Chamberlin Nominated
Drama Desk Award[18] Outstanding Musical Nominated
Outstanding Actor in a Musical Nathan Lane Nominated
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical Kevin Chamberlin Nominated
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical Carolee Carmello Nominated
Outstanding Music Andrew Lippa Nominated
Outstanding Lyrics Nominated
Outstanding Set Design Phelim McDermott, Julian Crouch and Basil Twist Won
Outstanding Lighting Design Natasha Katz Nominated
Drama League Award[74] Distinguished Production of a Musical Nominated
Distinguished Achievement in Musical Theatre Nathan Lane Won
Distinguished Performance Nominated
Bebe Neuwirth Nominated
Outer Critics Circle Award[75] Outstanding Actor in a Musical Nathan Lane Nominated
Outstanding Actress in a Musical Bebe Neuwirth Nominated
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical Kevin Chamberlin Nominated
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical Carolee Carmello Nominated
Outstanding Set Design (Play or Musical) Phelim McDermott and Julian Crouch Won

2015 Chicago Production[edit]

Year Award Category Nominee Result
2015 Jeff Award[35] Production - Musical - Midsize Won
Costume Design - Midsize Frances Maggio Nominated
Actor in a Principal Role - Musical Karl Hamilton Nominated


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  3. ^ a b Healy, Patrick (April 14, 2010). "Critics May Rant, but 'Addams Family' Rakes It In". New York Times.
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  6. ^ "2009-2010 Awards". Outer Critics Circle. Retrieved September 7, 2020.
  7. ^ "Drama League 2010 Award Winners". New York Theatre Guide. May 22, 2010. Retrieved September 7, 2020.
  8. ^ "The Addams Family Tony Awards Info". Retrieved September 7, 2020.
  9. ^ Healy, Patrick (December 28, 2009), "Revisions for 'Addams Family'", The New York Times
  10. ^ Siegel, Tatiana (October 10, 2012), "NY Comic-Con: Beatles Manager Getting Biopic From Broadway's Vivek J. Tiwary", The Hollywood Reporter
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  12. ^ a b Jones, Chris (May 12, 2009). "Addams Family musical, coming to Chicago, reveals stars and story". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved September 7, 2020.
  13. ^ Jones, Kenneth (December 29, 2009). "Zaks Is New Patriarch of Addams Family; Previews Will Now Begin March 8". Playbill. Archived from the original on June 4, 2011.
  14. ^ Jones, Kenneth (March 8, 2010). "Lane and Neuwirth Lead The Addams Family to Broadway, Starting March 8". Playbill. Archived from the original on June 29, 2011.
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External links[edit]

Preceded by Drama Desk Award for
Outstanding Set Design
Succeeded by