The hit musical The Addams Family transports you to Central Park for an evening of wild entertainment for all, with renowned songs such as ‘When You’re An Addams’ and the famous Addams Family theme song featured in the overture that fans love and adore. Along with witty jokes and spectacular sets throughout. Directed by Matthew White and choregraphed by Alistair David, this show immerses you within the beautiful design created by Diego Pitarch and transports you into the quirky and strange Addams Family household.
The story follows The Addams Family, Gomez (Cameron Blakely) and Mortcia (Joanne Clifton) the perfect husband and wife, Wednesday (Kingsley Morton) the beloved daughter who has a secret about Lucas Beineke (Ahmed Hamad) and keeping it could be more difficult than it seems without tearing the family apart. However, Uncle Fester (Scott Paige) and the Addams family ancestors begrudgingly assist Wednesday in her secret in order to hold the family together. The show is jam packed full of songs including the classic theme song, allowing the audience to snap their fingers in time with the beat.
Throughout the entire show I noticed the smooth transitions between lighting states, these transitions were created by the lighting designer Ben Cracknell. During the first song ‘When You’re An Addams’ I particularly enjoyed how the lights changed colour seamlessly in time with the beat of the music, and when Pugsley (Grant McIntyre) threw a bomb off into the stage right wing and a light turned on to look like the bomb had blown up offstage. I also thought the use of purple and green colours were used effectively to give a creepy atmosphere to the house. I noticed how certain characters such as Uncle Fester (Scott Paige) had a specific colour of light whenever they walked onto the stage, to portray an emotion or convey the type of characteristics the character withholds.
This show isn’t without its ensemble, each cast member perfectly portrayed their characters and coincided and interacted alongside a few notable ensemble members. This includes Ying Ue LI, Sophie Hutchinson and Matthew Ives. I particularly thought Wednesday Adams (Kingsley Morton) had strong vocals throughout the performance, especially in the songs ‘Crazier Than You’ and ‘One Normal Night’. Lurch is played by Dickon Gough and emulates his character perfectly, it’s a worth the wait for the song ‘Move Towards The Darkness’. However, you’ll have to see the show to find out more about this character.
As someone who loves to scrutinize the scenic elements of a show, I found that the set was very ingeniously designed with near seamless transitions flowing smoothly into the next scene. It goes to show how much can really be achieved with 2 staircases as your main set pieces which are used continuously throughout the entire show. The staircases have been cleverly embellished with a family tree leading up to the well-known and recognisable Addams ‘A’ at the top, displaying that the true meaning to this show is centred around the meaning of family no matter how strange or different. However, some of the set pieces on casters were a little too loud between scene changes and distracted you from what was happening on the stage, ruining the magic of what is going on behind the curtain.
My personal favourite characters quickly became Uncle Fester played by Scott Paige and Gomez who is played by Cameron Blakely. Uncle Fester’s witty jokes and flamboyant dance moves quickly won the crowd over along with breaking the fourth wall multiple times to add a comedic value to the story line. You can’t help but love his character on his journey towards keeping the family together, while showing each character what love is and its importance in the world. I also enjoyed the way Gomez portrayed his conflicting emotions between the love of his life and his only daughter, allowing the audience to see his struggle to maintain peace within the family, whilst trying not to upset anyone in the process.
This show is a must see for anyone who hasn’t already, a much-loved family favourite jam packed with familiar songs and quirky but strange and loveable characters. So run down to the New Wimbledon Theatre before it’s too late!
Playing until 19th February before continuing to tour the UK and Ireland, https://www.theaddamsfamily.co.uk/tour/
Reviewer: Lewis Downham
Reviewed: 15th February 2022
North West End UK Rating: ★★★★★