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Review: Creepy, Kooky, Spooky, Ooky, and So Much Fun! THE ADDAMS FAMILY at Broadway Rose

Summer in Portland brings many joys - waterfront festivals, river floats, outdoor concerts, and big, flashy musicals at Broadway Rose Theatre. THE ADDAMS FAMILY is exactly the sort of big, flashy musical that makes the drive out to Tigard worth it - good music, a fun story, a great cast, and a lot of theatre magic.

THE ADDAMS FAMILY brings together all of your favorite kooky characters from the comic strip, the TV show, or the movies (for me it was the 1991 movie). The family and the ghosts of all of their ancestors throughout history have gathered to solve a big problem: Wednesday is in love, and not with a fellow morbid misfit, but with an average Joe (or Lucas, as the case may be) from Ohio. And all she wants is for the family to act normal for just one night so Lucas and his parents come over for dinner and the young couple can announce their engagement. However, normal is not part of the Addams' vocabulary, and hilarity ensues. On a deeper level, the musical is about family, love, and embracing the fact that we're all kooky in our own way.

The huge cast includes some of my PDX musical theatre favorites (Joe Theissen as Gomez, LisaMarie Harrison as Morticia, Isaac Lamb as Fester) as well as many newer faces I hope to see more of (Emily Windler as Grandma, many of the ancestors). Although there were many excellent performances, Amy Jo Halliday stole the show. She plays Alice Beincke, Lucas's annoyingly cheerful, incredibly dull mother - who turns out to be anything but annoying or dull.

One of the advantages of the Deb Fennell Auditorium, where Broadway Rose performs its two major summer shows, is that the big stage can accommodate a Broadway-sized set. For THE ADDAMS FAMILY, the set provides a ton of theatre magic - Fester flying to serenade the moon, the monster under Pugsley's bed, Cousin Itt. It also provides plenty of space for the dance routines, including the obligatory tango and my personal favorite, the ghost kick line.

I thoroughly enjoyed THE ADDAMS FAMILY. I recommend you round up your own kooky family and go see it.

THE ADDAMS FAMILY runs through July 23. More details and tickets here.

Photo credit: Sam Ortega

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