SANDY, Utah, Oct. 4, 2019 (Gephardt Daily) — The Hale Centre Theatre is throwing a Halloween party, of sorts, including on-stage monsters, a haunted house and a tour of life lived differently.
“The Addams Family” plays on the theater’s jewel box stage through mid-November, and delivers lots of music, spectacular sets, and even a trio of turbulent love stories — young, mature and delightfully impossible.
The 2010 Broadway musical tells the story of the macabre Addams, which came to life from the mind of Charles Addams, who drew more than 1,300 single-panel comics over the course of his career. Next came the 1964 television series, then several live-actions films, and an animated one that opens in theaters Friday.
But only the theater performance allows you to share the room with the Addam Family, and truly experience their awkwards attempt to interact with the normal world.
Wednesday has become a young woman and fallen in love, in the musical version, and she has fallen for a young man from a “normal” family, invited over for dinner. And, much to the young couple’s embarrassment, for what Uncle Fester sums up as “delicious anarchy.”
Wednesday (played on different nights by MaKenna Tinney and Rebecca Kremin) confides in her father, Gomez (Josh Richardson/Benjamin Henderson) that she and beau Lucas (Nathanael Abbott/Nathan Kremin) plan to marry, but forbids him from telling mother/wife Morticia (Erin Royall Carlson/Amelia Rose Moore).
Gomez has pledged never to keep a secret from his love, Morticia, but his beloved daughter begs.
And Uncle Fester (Jeff Thompson/Daniel Anderson) enlists a chorus of ancestors’ ghosts to smooth the course of true love, because he has forbidden love of his own.
Adding to the fun is little brother Pugsley, Grandma, butler Lurch and Thing, along with the visiting, straightlaced Beinekes. What could possibly go wrong?
In the Friday show reviewed, Richardson was dashing and funny as Gomez, switten with his beautiful and odd Morticia, Carlson. Both have exceptional voices. In fact, almost everyone in the cast had a top notch voice to bring to the story.
Costumes by Joy Zhu are modern and timeless, depending on the character, and are lush and elegant to see. The hair and makeup design by Charlisa McConnell Robertson fits the characters so well, you don’t even think about them wearing hair and makeup.
And set design, by Jennifer Stapley Taylor, take the audience from a graveyard to a Gothic mansion to a lake and back seamlessly.
Impressive set pieces include a torture chamber device Wednesday uses on brother Pugsley and a dinning table that allows free movement and speed to Thing. The whole show was brought together by seamlessly by director David Tinney.
The show has silly humor for children, style and drama for adults, a visual feast for anyone who loves theater and theater craft, and morbid merriment for fans of the dark Halloween spirit.
“The Addams Family” continues 7:30 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays, with some weekday matinees, through Nov. 16 at the Hale Centre Theatre, 9900 S. Monroe St., Sandy. For more information and tickets, click here.