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BrumHour saw The Addams Family at the invite of The Alexandra.
For Brum Radio’s Interval Theatre Dave Massey spoke to Joanne Clifton about playing the iconic role of Morticia Addams in the UK Tour of The Addams Family. Listen here:
By Dave Massey twitter.com/BrumHour
This production contains some mild language and cigar smoking.
Review: The Addams Family at The Alexandra
⭐⭐⭐⭐ – A brilliantly fun and quirky musical.
Directed by Matthew White, book by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice Lyrics by Andrew Lippa.
Wednesday Addams (Kingsley Morton) is now about 18 and is in love! Wednesday wants to get married to Lucas Beineke (Ahmed Hamad) who is considered too normal by her family and she confides in her father Gomez (Cameron Blakely) causing friction between him and his wife Morticia (Joanne Clifton). They invite over Lucas’ parents Mal and Alice Beineke (Played by Sean Kingsley and Kara Lane) to dinner. Meanwhile, Uncle Fester (Scott Paige) has invited the spirits of their ancestors to stay and keep an eye on everyone.
This stage musical version of the long running newspaper cartoon which has crossed over into film, tv and animation is a joy to watch. Once perceived as anti establishment and a family not to strive to become, The Addams Family has moved into the mainstream They are fully formed characters that can be placed into any situation and this means there are endless stories to tell. Giving this set of characters the Broadway treatment just adds depth to their personalities as the stage lights shine on their inner thoughts. They get to explore the dark side of their emotions which means they are more aware of themselves than the supposedly “normal” visitors.
It’s difficult to know who is the biggest scene stealer out of this company: all eyes are on Strictly Come Dancing winner Joanne Clifton as she dances a fantastic tango with Cameron Blakely. Blakely himself is as determined to make the cast laugh as much as the audience and there are moments where he deliberately tries to get them to break character. Scott Paige (From Channel 4’s The Circle!) himself talks to the audience and shows how talented he is with accents and his own dance moves. His comedic line “To the Moon, Alice” wooshes mostly over a British Audience’s head but is actually from The Honeymooners, an American TV show, versions of it can be heard in Back To The Future (On the TV in 1955.)
Grant Mcintyre’s Pugsley delivers some excellent vocals as does Kara Lane, while Dickon Gough gets his chance to show his vocals whilst playing the mostly silent Lurch. We get to see a totally different side to Joanne Clifton as Morticia, after all, she previously played the naive Janet in Rocky Horror and yet again Joanne demonstrates her great vocals in this role.
The story as it is, is actually fairly thin and fleshed out with character moments, dumb jokes are expertly mixed in with smart humour. The ancestors are used very effectively, lurking around every scene and there’s even a Harry Potter-style moving portrait in the background which never seems to be referred to but features different performers.
The running time is listed as one hour and fifteen minutes for act one and with act two at fifty five minutes and I think the audience would have sat for another hour. They loved these characters clearly and this production.
This was my second time seeing this tour which had previously been in Birmingham in 2017 and I recalled a lot of the music. It was well worth it as The Addams Family is a brilliantly fun and quirky musical.
The Addams Family is at The Alexandra until 22nd January 2022. The tour currently continues until Saturday 18th June 2022. See the full tour details here: theaddamsfamily.co.uk