Theatre in Wales

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Well-earned Standing ovation from devotees

The Addams Family (The Musical Comedy)

Aria Entertainments and Music and Lyrics in association with The Festival Theatre Edinburgh , Wales Millennium Centre , August-03-17
The Addams Family (The Musical Comedy) by Aria Entertainments and Music and Lyrics in association with The Festival Theatre Edinburgh I well remember the original 1960s TV series hitting our television screens and bringing us much
hilarity and bemusement. This wonderful energetic cast perfectly captures the spirit of this exotic and bizarre family and gives us the opportunity to share it with them. We are welcomed by, head of the family, Gomez, an extraordinary performance from Cameron Blakely who with a great, welcoming twinkle in his eye acts, sings and dances the night away rarely leaving the stage.

There’s some kind of celebration going on as the full company tells how great it is to be an Addams, then they release their ancestors from their graves below to join in. Then there’s a hiccup: they are not able to return them back underground, which is just as well as these ‘ancestors’ provide the brilliant chorus that gives great backing to all the weird goings on.

For those that don’t know The Addams’ they get their big kicks from what to us ‘normals’ would be masochistic. We see the son of the house, Pugsley being pulled and stretched by chains to his great delight. Grant McIntyre captures the spirit of this curious young man with a wonderful warm cheekiness and delight.

Even more wonderful is Samantha Womack’s haughty passion as Morticia, mother to the Addams’. It
is her trouble with her feisty daughter Wednesday that the ‘plot’ of the show revolves around. Carrie
Hope Fletcher gives us another very strong and wicked performance. We mustn’t forget the elder of
the family Uncle Fester, given a superb and beautiful interpretation by Les Dennis proving again what
a master of the stage this man is. He is a very gentle old man. He falls in love with the moon! The moon
comes down to earth and dances for him. This is a beautiful sincere and quiet scene much in contrast
to the mayhem of the rest of the show. Eventually he straps a rocket to his back so that he can be with
the moon permanently. It’s a pity we can’t see the launch on stage. But we wish him well.
There’s also an old granny. Valda Aviks does old-granny acting with fun and perfection.

But a lot happens before that: Wednesday has fallen in love with a normal human being, Lucas, a fine,
all American boy performance from Oliver Ormson. Granny and Pugsley have been up to no good with
concoctions and have laced the drinks at the welcoming dinner for Lucas’ parents. This gives Charlotte
Page as his mother, Alice a great opportunity to give us the power of her singing and commitment to
her role. This demure All American housewife has drunk the truth drug, turns diva, dances on the
table and feigns a terrible death before everyone’s eyes. Later she finds her real self by transforming
herself into a Morticia lookalike. Much to the pleasure of husband and former Rock and Roller Mal.
Dale Rapley also gets into the full swing of things and gives us air-guitar in his dressing gown.

There are many ups and downs in the Wednesday – Lucas relationship but eventually they do find
love together. Showing us that for all the great pleasure Addams style living might give the exotic
family, it’s simply human emotions that win through in the end.

Reviewed by: Michael Kelligan

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