Deep… Dark… And wickedly funny. The Shubert has been host to the wonderfully odd Addams Family. A stage show that is, in short, a fantastic music comedy that will delight audience members of any age. From the opening, a jaunty and well choreographed number about the virtues of being a member of the illustrious family Addams, to its show stopping closing, a wonderfully brisk pacing and precise comedy timing is maintained due to a capable and talented cast.
The stand out of the show for me would have to be Gomez, the patriarch of the Addams family, played handily by Jesse Sharp. His pleasing tenor with a healthy splash of swarthy Latin charm is a welcomed treat to the ears throughout the performance. I will also have to mention the fantastic performance of Shaun Rice in the role of Uncle Fester (complete with light bulb), who is the focus of what I found to be the most whimsical and entertaining scene in the show involving a striped swim suit and his girlfriend who you might recognize.
The casting as a whole was fantastic, as well as the singing, especially the powerful notes hit by Jennifer Fogarty who played the role of Wednesday Addams.
The sets put into use by this company were beautiful and well utilized and so much more than a painted back drop. The opening grave yard sequence that fluidly changes into the Addams’ mansion interior is proof of that right from the start. The costume and props were also well done and I have to give a great big nod to some of the amazing special effects in the show; from a living tassel and moving re-creations of rats and lizards, to a scene with a traveling bed you need to see to believe, the prop department sure did their jobs well and clearly had fun while they were at it. While we are on the topic of professionals enjoying their work, it would be impossible not to mention the work of The Addams Family Orchestra, led by conductor Nolan Bonvouloir. The music was lively and perfectly accompanied the fantastic acting that was happening on the stage with flawless timing. There were times when the music sounded so good that I didn’t think it could be live, which is perhaps the shortcoming of my untrained ear, though most likely due to the talented crew.
In closing, I would just like to say that as someone who visits the Shubert on a semi-regular occasion, I didn’t think I could be surprised by the quality of a show on that stage and I was smarty proven wrong by this show. I was pleasantly surprised by the humor, music and sincerity of the entertaining look into the wild world if the Addams family. Its last showing in the Shubert New Haven is on February 3rd and if by some chance you can get tickets to the show, I would highly suggest it. The side splitting humor alone would be reason enough, but with the addition of all the ingredients, you are in for a ghoulishly wonderful time when the Addams family invades New Haven.
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