The Addams Family (musical)
|The Addams Family|
|A New Musical Comedy|
|Basis||Comic strip by Charles Addams|
|Productions||2009 Chicago tryout
2011 US Tour
2013 Buenos Aires
The Addams Family is a musical comedy with music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa and a 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. Numerous film and television adaptations of Addams' cartoons exist, but the musical, which is the first stage show based on the characters, is based upon the cartoons rather than the television and film characters. The Addams Family is also the first production produced by Elephant Eye Theatricals.
After a tryout in Chicago, the show opened on Broadway in April 2010. The original cast featured Nathan Lane as Gomez and Bebe Neuwirth as Morticia. An original Broadway cast recording was released on June 8, 2010.
The Broadway production closed on December 31, 2011. A revised national tour of North America began in September 2011.
The UK premiere of The Addams Family was announced on 5 September 2016, and will open at the Festival Theatre in Edinburgh in April 2017 before embarking on a major UK tour.
- 1 Development
- 2 Productions
- 3 Synopsis
- 4 Musical numbers
- 5 Casts
- 6 Analysis of book and music
- 7 Original Broadway cast recording
- 8 Reception
- 9 Awards and nominations
- 10 References
- 11 External links
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. The musical's lead producers were Stuart Oken and Roy Furman. In addition to Oken and Furman, Vivek Tiwary also joined The Addams Family musical's team of producers. 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.
Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice were engaged to write the book, with Andrew Lippa composing the show's score. Improbable theatre founders Julian Crouch and Phelim McDermott were the original directors and designers, with choreography by Sergio Trujillo. 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?" The partners described the result as "an off-beat take on 19th Century Gothic."
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.
The show began previews on Broadway at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre on March 8, 2010, with an official opening night of April 8. The production was originally estimated to cost $10 million, but more recent reports give the budget as $15 million.
All of the cast from the tryout transferred to Broadway. The creative team includes 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.
The show won a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Set Design but received no other major awards. However, it did win the Broadway.com 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).
A May 2011 article in Playbill reported that the show had now grossed over $62 million. The show celebrated its 500th performance on June 16, 2011. Playbill reported in May 2011 that "plans for other international productions are currently underway."
The Broadway production closed on December 31, 2011, after 35 previews and 722 performances.
A United States tour began in September 2011 at the Mahalia Jackson Theater for the Performing Arts in New Orleans. Tour stops include 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. The musical was also performed in Toronto, Canada, at the Toronto Centre for the Arts, during November 16–27, 2011. Douglas Sills and Sara Gettelfinger play Gomez and Morticia Addams, respectively. 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."
A second tour of North America, produced by Phoenix Entertainment, has launched in 2013, starring Jennifer Fogarty as Wednesday Addams, KeLeen Snowgren as Morticia Addams, Jesse Sharp as Gomez Addams, Shaun Rice as Uncle Fester, and Sam Primack as Pugsley. After the second national tour, The Addams Family will tour Asia. Most, if not all, of the 2nd National Tour cast will perform in the Asian tour except Sam Primack as Pugsley. He will be replaced by Connor Barth.
Return to Chicago
The Addams Family returned to Chicago in a sit-down production at Mercury Theater Chicago opening February 5, 2015 after a week of previews. 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 Addams), Rebecca Prescott (Morticia Addams), Harter Clingman (Uncle Fester), Amanda Hartley (Grandma), Dara Cameron (Wednesday Addams), Brennan Dougherty (Pugsley Addams), Jeff Diebold (Lurch), Jason Grimm (Mal Beineke), Cory Goodrich (Alice Beineke), and Henry McGinniss (Lucas Beineke). The Addams Ancestors were Sarah Hayes, Leah Morrow, Jared Rein, Sawyer Smith, Alexander Walker, and Lucy Zukaitis.
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). "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). "An absolute delight! The best show I've seen so far this year." (New City Chicago) The production was honored with three 2015 Jeff Awards nominations, and was named Outstanding Production—Musical—Midsize.
The first international production opened March 2012 at Teatro Abril, São Paulo, Brazil, produced by T4F with Marisa Orth and Daniel Boaventura at principal cast. It closed in December 2012. The same production started on January 10, 2013, at Vivo Rio, in Rio de Janeiro.
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)
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. 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.
The musical began its Argentinian premiere at Teatro Ópera in Buenos Aires, Argentina, starting in June 19, 2013. It is produced by T4F (Time For Fun) the same company who produced "The Phantom of the Opera" ("O Fantasma da Ópera"/"El Fantasma de la Ópera"), "The Beauty and the Beast" ("A Bela e a Fera"/"La Bella y la Bestia"), "The Sound of Music" ("A Noviça Rebelde"/"La Novicia Rebelde"), Mamma Mia! and in this case, "The Addams Family" ("A Família Addams"/"Los Locos Addams") in São Paulo and Buenos Aires. The cast will include Gabriel Goity as Homero (Gomez) Addams, Julieta Díaz as Morticia Addams, Santiago Ríos as Tío Lucas (Uncle Fester), Gabi Goldberg as Abuela (Grandma) Addams, Alejandro Viola as Mauricio Beineke (Mal Beineke), Dolores Ocampo as Alice Beineke, Laura Esquivel as Merlina (Wednesday) Addams, Marcelo Albamonte as Largo (Lurch), and Marco Di Mónaco as Lucas Beineke. Four kids will play Pericles (Pugsley) Addams: 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 features 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), Sami Eerola (Lurch).
"Los Locos Addams" opened in October 31, 2013 at Teatro Marsano in Lima, Peru, directed by Domenico Poggi. It is produced by La Gran Manzana, the same producers of "RENT". The cast featured Diego Bertie as Gomez Addams (Homero Addams), Fiorella Rodriguez as Morticia Addams, Nicolás Fantinato as Uncle Fester (Tío Lucas), Patricia Portocarrero and Fiorella Rojas as Grandma (Abuela), Gina Yangali as Wednesday (Merlina), Gustavo Mayer as Lurch (Largo), Luis Baca as Lucas Beineke (Walter Beineke), Trilce Cavero as Alice Beineke, Miguel Alvarez as Mal Beineke, Giuseppino Castellano and Brando Gallesi as Pugsley (Pericles)
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).
The Addams Family debuted in German language in July 2014 in Merzig and closed in September 2014. In December it was staged in Bremen. The cast included a lot of famous musical and TV actors: Gomez (Uwe Kröger), Morticia (Edda Petri), Wednesday (Jana Stelley), Fester (Enrico DePieri), Grandma (Anne Welte), Pugsley (Noah Walczuch), Mal Beineke (Ethan Freeman), Alice Beineke (April Hailer) and Lucas Beineke (Dominik Hees). The German cast also produced an album, published in December 2014.
The Addams Family premiered in Milan, Italy in October 2014. Certanly the theatrical event of the year this production features an outstanding cast: Elio and Geppi Cucciari will star as irreverent Gomez and sexy Morticia. Costumes are designed by stylist Antonio Marras. Musical supervisor Cinzia Pennesi, Set Design Guido Fiorato, Light Design Marco Filibeck. The Italian version is directed by Giorgio Gallione and translated and adapted by famous Italian writer Stefano Benni. Costumes are designed by stylist Antonio Marras. Other cast includes: Uncle Fester: Pierpaolo Lopatriello – Wednesday: Giulia Odetto – Pugsley: Leonardo Garbetta, Emanuele Ghizzinardi, Giacomo Nasta, Grandma: Sergio Mancinelli – Lurch: Filippo Musenga – Lucas Beineke: Paolo Avanzini – Alice Beineke: Clara Maselli – Mal Beineke: Andrea Spina – Ancestors – ensemble: Chiara Barbagallo, Federica Basso, Gianluca Briganti, Luca Buttiglieri, Tiziana Fimiani, Luca Làconi, Camilla Lucchini, Giulia Patti, Daniele Romano, Nicola Trazzi.
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 Gomez (Homero), Gloria Aura as Wednesday (Merlina), Miguel Ángel Pérez and Sebastián Gallegos as Pugsley (Pericles), Gerardo González as Uncle Fester (El tío Lucas), Raquel Pankowsky as Grandma (La abuela) and José Roberto Pisano as Lurch; also including Luca Duhart as Lucas (Tomás) Beineke, Tomás Castellanos as Mal (Mauricio) Beineke and Marisol del Olmo as Alice (Alicia) Beineke.
On September 5, 2016, it was announced that The Addams Family musical would embark on a major UK and Ireland tour produced by James Yeoburn and Stuart Matthew Price for United Theatrical, Katy Lipson for Aria Entertainment, and Music & Lyrics. The production is to be directed by Matthew White and is reported to open at Edinburgh Festival Theatre on April 20, 2017.
The ghoulish Addams family is 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, 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 (To which Gomez says that "you look like a crime scene!"). Later, Lucas and Wednesday, away from their families, reveal that the reason they brought their families together is to announce that they are getting married. 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. He steals a potion from Grandma after she reveals it will bring out someone's dark nature. Pugsley plans to slip it to Wednesday at dinner ("What If?").
At dinner, "The Game" is played, where each person at the table confesses something ("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. In a mix-up, Alice drinks Pugsley's potion and in front of everyone declares her marriage to Mal a loveless mess as she reveals her misery and woe ("Waiting"). As Mal, humiliated, attempts to leave with his family, Wednesday announces that she and Lucas are getting married, 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").
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 and 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 can't sleep because "there's no monster in the closet". Morticia tells him that "I'm sure he's hiding some place else." This 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's 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's flying off to be with the moon. At this moment, he says a line to Alice that is a tribute to Ralph Kramden's catchphrase from The Honeymooners after she questions him about his transportation. 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").
The principal original casts of the major productions of The Addams Family.
|Role||Original Broadway cast||Original US Tour cast|
|Gomez Addams||Nathan Lane||Douglas Sills|
|Morticia Addams||Bebe Neuwirth||Sara Gettelfinger|
|Uncle Fester||Kevin Chamberlin||Blake Hammond|
|Wednesday Addams||Krysta Rodriguez||Cortney Wolfson|
|Lucas Beineke||Wesley Taylor||Brian Justin Crum|
|Grandma Addams||Jackie Hoffman||Pippa Pearthree|
|Pugsley Addams||Adam Riegler||Patrick D. Kennedy|
|Lurch||Zachary James||Tom Corbeil|
|Mal Beineke||Terrence Mann||Martin Vidnovic|
|Alice Beineke||Carolee Carmello||Crista Moore|
Analysis of book and music
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." 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. This included giving Gomez a Flamenco-style Spanish score, Wednesday a more contemporary score, and Fester a vaudevillian score. "Let's Not Talk About Anything Else but Love" is "jazzy/swingy/catchy" and "Happy/Sad" is a ballad reminiscent of Stephen Sondheim.
Original Broadway cast recording
|The Addams Family
(Cast Recording of the Musical)
|Soundtrack album by Andrew Lippa|
|Released||June 8, 2010|
|Recorded||April 19, 2010|
An original Broadway cast recording was produced by Decca Broadway. 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.
|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|
|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|
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." The Chicago Sun-Times theater critic wrote a laudatory review, 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.
Reviews for the Broadway production were mixed but mostly negative (the median grade of 27 major reviews was "D+"). 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." 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". 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."
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. 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.
The post-tour return to Chicago was hailed as "triumphant" (New City Chicago), 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." 
Awards and nominations
Original Broadway production
|2010||Tony Award||Best Original Score||Andrew Lippa||Nominated|
|Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical||Kevin Chamberlin||Nominated|
|Drama Desk Award||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 Set Design||Phelim McDermott, Julian Crouch and Basil Twist||Won|
|Outstanding Lighting Design||Natasha Katz||Nominated|
|Drama League Award||Distinguished Production of a Musical||Nominated|
|Distinguished Achievement in Musical Theatre||Nathan Lane||Won|
|Outer Critics Circle Award||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||Jeff Award||Production—Musical—Midsize||The Addams Family||Won|
|Costume Design—Midsize||Frances Maggio||Nominated|
|Actor in a Principal Role—Musical||Karl Hamilton||Nominated|
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- The Addams Family UK
- The Addams Family UK on Facebook
- The Addams Family UK on Instagram
- The Addams Family at the Internet Broadway Database
- The Addams Family at Broadway.com
- The Addams Family Song Lyrics
Tim Hatley for Shrek: The Musical
|Drama Desk Award for
Outstanding Set Design
Derek McLane for Anything Goes