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AdamsFamily-bannerThe Addams Family, a new musical based on the bizarre and beloved family of characters created by legendary cartoonist Charles Addams made its Fort Lauderdale premiere April 9th at Broward Center for the Performing Arts as part of the Bank of America Broadway in Fort Lauderdale 2012-2013 Subscription Season.

Jesse Sharp and KeLeen Snowgren will star as …   

AdamsFamily-bannerThe Addams Family, a new musical based on the bizarre and beloved family of characters created by legendary cartoonist Charles Addams made its Fort Lauderdale premiere April 9th at Broward Center for the Performing Arts as part of the Bank of America Broadway in Fort Lauderdale 2012-2013 Subscription Season.

AdamsFamily-pic1Jesse Sharp and KeLeen Snowgren will star as Gomez and Morticia in a cast that also includes Shaun Rice as Uncle Fester, Amanda Bruton as Grandma, Jennifer Fogarty as Wednesday, Sam Primack and Jeremy Todd Shinder as Pugsley, Dan Olson as Lurch, Mark Poppleton as Mal Beineke, Blair Anderson as Alice Beineke and Bryan Welnicki as Lucas Beineke.

The Addams Family features an original story and it’s every father’s nightmare. Wednesday Addams, the ultimate princess of darkness, has grown up and fallen in love with a sweet, smart, young man from a respectable family: A man her parents have never met. And if that weren’t upsetting enough, she confides in her father and begs him not to tell her mother. Now, Gomez Addams must do something he’s never done before – keep a secret from his beloved wife, Morticia. Everything will change for the whole family on the fateful night they host a dinner for Wednesday’s “normal” boyfriend and his parents.

It was a pleasure to sit down with Shaun Rice, who plays Uncle Fester, for a few questions.

AdamsFamily-pic2What are the differences between the iconic Television Show and this musical? 

The musical actually draws a lot from the television series, movies and original cartoon drawings of the characters.  I think there are two main differences.  First would be my character of Uncle Fester.  In the TV show, he is portrayed as Morticia’s uncle (and hence Grandma Frump’s Brother) – but in the musical we see him as we do in the films: Gomez’s brother…and therefore a true Addams.  The second difference would be the children, Wednesday and Pugsley.  In the TV show they are both fairly young with Pugsley being slightly older, I believe.  In the musical we meet a much older Wednesday who is about to be engaged, though Pugsley remains about the same age as he was in the TV show.  Though the feel of the musical is very much like an extended ‘very special musical’ episode of the TV show, I think audiences that are fans of the 1960s Addams will relate to us and really enjoy the show.

 Which character is most like the original and why?

With the exception of Wednesday (who is going through some emotional struggles throughout the musical), the characters are all very identifiable to their original TV and cartoon counterparts.  Gomez, as the head of the household, retains his over-the-top bravado and genuine chemistry with Morticia.  Morticia is very level-headed, if not a little overbearing and mysterious. Fester is still the ‘heart’ of the family while keeping just enough of creepiness.  Pugsley is that little boy who likes to pull the wings off of flies and play with blow torches.  And Grandma is forever fiddling with her potions.

AdamsFamily-pic3What is the most fun part(s) about being in The Addams Family?

The characters in The Addams Family are such a part of the American pop culture and are loved by so many people.  My favorite part about this experience is just getting to step into a role as iconic as Fester.  I grew up watching the movie versions – my parents watched the TV show – now I get to be a part of the ‘Addams tradition’ and help bring these characters to a whole new generation.

The Addams Family features a book by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice, and music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa. The production is directed by Jerry Zaks with choreography by Sergio Trujillo. Production design (sets and costumes) by Phelim McDermott and Julian Crouch with set adaptations by James Kronzer. The production features lighting design by Natasha Katz, sound design by Craig Cassidy and puppetry by Basil Twist.

AdamsFamily-pic4The Addams Family, which began performances in March 2010 at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre, immediately became one of Broadway’s biggest hits. Chris Jones of the Chicago Tribune described the production as “classic, full-tilt, fast paced, old-fashioned musical comedy!” and John Simon of Bloomberg News called it “uproarious! A glitzy-gloomy musical entirely worthy of the macabre drawings by Charles Addams.”

The Addams Family tour for North America is produced by Phoenix Entertainment, Stephen B. Kane and Michael McFadden, by special arrangement with Theatrical Rights Worldwide. For more information, visit www.tafontour.com.

The Addams Family will play through Sunday, April 21st at Broward Center for the Performing Arts. Performances are Tuesday through Saturday evenings at 8:00pm and Sunday April 14th at 7:30pm. Matinee performances are all Saturdays and Sundays and Wednesday, April 17th at 2:00pm. Tickets are $39.50 – $79.50 and are

now on sale at the Broward Center Box Office Monday through Friday 10AM – 5PM, Saturday and Sunday 12 Noon – 5PM and 1 ½ hours prior to show times; or on-line at www.browardcenter.org; by phone 954-462-0222. Groups of 10+ are invited to call 954-626-7814 or 954-462-0222.

The Broadway in Fort Lauderdale 2012-2013 subscription season is made possible with the generous support of Bank of America and is presented by Florida Theatrical Association, Broadway Across America and Broward Center for the Performing Arts.

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