Skip to main content

Review of The Addams Family at Royal & Derngate (Derngate), Northampton

It is twenty years since The Addams Family last graced the cinema screens and over fifty since the TV series finished, yet it was as if it was inbred into the entire audience as seconds into this musical they were all either clapping or finger clicking to the famous "click click" of the theme tune. The matinee audience was as contrasting as you could imagine, with the typical retired members and vast numbers of children of all ages in several school groups, however, whatever age all were entranced as this captivating musical took to the stage.
The first thing that is very apparent from this touring production of the 2010 Broadway musical is how gorgeous it looks. A stunning and innovative set from Diego Pitarch and beautifully dressed, this is no cheap budget touring production.

After the overture, the musical credentials are set high early with the lively When You're An Addams performed brilliantly by the whole company, and it is a benchmark for a glorious collection and, as expected from the best musicals, a contrasting collection of all styles. There is the lovely gentle What If?, the epic One Normal Night and perhaps my own favourite, the lively showtime Full Disclosure.
Cameron Blakely (Gomez) and
Samantha Womack (Morticia)

The cast is really brilliant throughout with in particular a quite amazing Cameron Blakely as Gomez, he like the rest of the cast has a superb singing voice, however, he imbues so much wicked character into the role as well.

The known names of this show do not let the side down either, Samantha Womack is a deeply and darkly alluring Morticia, creating a huge amount of comedy from the deadpan character and her grimacing smiles. She shares also a stylish tango routine with Blakely, showing some neatly hidden moves. Les Dennis is also a treat as Fester, part narrator and part comic Uncle, he as expected nails the comedy, however, he also is surprising and unexpectedly good in the singing routines. His performance of The Moon And Me is really truly a sweet moment.

Carrie Hope Fletcher is always a star and her cheeky and super confident Wednesday is a true delight. Full of real mischief and character, and of course a totally stunning singing voice. Dickon Gough steals every scene he appears in as the silent growling Lurch, and has a neat trick for the audience up his sleeve at the end. The ensemble from this production is also tremendously strong creating Alistair David's brilliant choreography with tremendous style and skill.
Carrie Hope Fletcher (Wednesday)
and Cameron Blakely (Gomez)

Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice's book, coupled with Andrew Lippa music and lyrics absolutely nail the dark and mischievous character of the show, treading a fine and clever balance between fun for the younger members and slipping some occasional very adult jokes into the piece without stepping too far. Therefore totally leaving this a show absolutely for the whole family.

The Addams Family is a quite brilliant production, full of visual flair, stunning tunes brilliantly performed by the cast and a lovely reminder of the classic show/film, but also accessible enough for anyone unfamiliar with the original. Get yourself to this promptly as it's too good to be missed and you never know whether you have much time as we all know Death is Just Around the Corner.

««««½


Performance reviewed: Wednesday 10th May 2017 (matinee) at the Royal & Derngate (Derngate), Northampton.

The Addams Family runs at the Royal & Derngate until Saturday 13th May 2017 
and continues it's throughout 2017. Details of dates and locations can be found at http://www.theaddamsfamily.co.uk/

For further details visit the Royal & Derngate website at http://www.royalandderngate.co.uk/

PHOTOS: MATT MARTIN
The cast of The Addams Family

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Review of The Last Ship at Royal & Derngate (Derngate), Northampton

When The Last Ship first launched as a musical on Broadway (adapted from a concept album by Sting), it was received with a mixture of reaction, most thoughts though of the negative nature, the critics especially found the whole thing far from shipshape. Here, having launched in its spiritual home of Newcastle, it arrives in very landlocked Northampton on a UK tour in a very different form. Characters have been dropped, songs have been reordered, storylines reworked, and original cast members are gone. So, whether the US audience would have been appreciative of this new The Last Ship is unknown, however, there is an incredible amount to like from this show and on Northampton opening night reactions, the audience here is liking what they see.

Gideon has returned, having taken to the seas 17 years before, leaving his girlfriend Meg behind and a strong and stable shipyard in operation. On his return, things are very different, not least for Meg, who is initially not keen on his return, f…

Review of The Flying Lovers Of Vitebsk at Royal & Derngate (Royal), Northampton

Kneehigh, the Cornwall based theatre company, has created an immense recognition over the 30 years or so they have been formed, and Emma Rice, who directs here, has come out as one of the more recognisable people from the group. Here, with The Flying Lovers of Vitebsk, they, and Rice are in incredible form.

Writer Daniel Jamieson tells us the tale of artist Marc Chagall and his wife Bella as their love blossoms during some of the most turbulent times in history.

This tale, by Jamieson, first saw a life on stage over 25 years ago, back then titled Birthday (the name of a painting by Chagall, which depicts he and his wife doing their "flying"). In the original production, Jamieson played Marc, and Rice played Bella. Now many years later, Rice has taken the original and created a brand new vivid version.

It's easy to fall in love with The Flying Lovers of Vitebsk very early on, as two things occur. The first is as you are seated in the theatre, you become captivated by the…

Review of Cinderella, performed by University Of Northampton BA Actors at Maidwell Hall (Avenue Campus), Northampton

So, this is a bit different, the third year actors (my fifth group of them!) do panto, Cinderella to be precise. Pantomime is my perennial favourite bit of theatre. Oh no, it isn't! However, I have long acknowledged that for an actor, the form is both incredibly important, because if you can entertain kids, you can probably do anything, it also provides a large opening for a regular gig each year as they are so abundant. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the intelligent bods teaching these students have come to the decision to create a little panto action of their own.

This first of three (and the other two are very different beasts, as you will learn from the next reviews) is the ever so traditional one. Formed partly from the work of Looking Glass Theatre and director James Smith, I first saw much of this piece in January 2015, and although I didn't remember a great deal of it after this time, the cheese song managed to flash back to me, perhaps, sadly. So, how do the…