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Review: THE ADDAMS FAMILY at Crown Uptown

The production run until June 26th, 2022

Review: THE ADDAMS FAMILY at Crown Uptown

Snap! Snap! This production of The Addams Family at the Crown Uptown is A MUST SEE! This show runs until June 26, so call for tickets now! The show is well written and tight, with some really gorgeous music and equally gorgeous voices! The script is HILARIOUS, with some fantastic plot complications. Round up the kids and head over. Don't miss this well done production!

Before the show began, we met Julia the Bellhop, a delightful young lady who is part of the Tasha Wentling Immersive Art Experience in the back of the theatre, on the other side of the bar. In partnership with Harvester Arts, the gallery allows guests to touch and experience a spooky makeshift hotel lobby before the show starts. We visited the display before the show and it set our mood for the main event. Wentling's photography was also on display and is available for purchase.

The Addams Family has a book written by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice, with music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa. Wednesday, the ultimate princess of darkness, has grown up and fallen in love with a sweet, smart young man from a respectable family-much to her mother's dismay. Everything will change for both families on the fateful night when The Addams Family hosts a dinner for Wednesday's "normal" boyfriend and his parents.

Costumes by Dora Arbuckle were spot on, and she nailed Morticia's slinky signature black dress and long, straight hair. The Ancestors' ensembles were simply gorgeous, head to toe white, with loads of texture and interest. Arbuckle was also responsible for props, which were also very impressive. Keep an eye out for the remote controlled rat, the bird gag, and the MONSTER HANDS! There was some nice atmospheric lighting by Scott Olney, with lots of prerequisite haze to maintain the classic graveyard look. The cute, albeit spooky set, designed by Kate Smeltzer, was very effective.

Sound design by Jesse Balzer was exceptional. The Crown is a notoriously difficult room to mix, and usually only sounds good if you're sitting down front and dead center. This is the first time I sat mid-house left, and was bowled over by the great sound. I could hear all the voices and instruments - the separation was outstanding. I also noticed the addition of sound baffles on the ceiling. Kudos for solving that age old issue! The lovely, lush score was well played, under the direction of Andrew Bowers. The singers and musicians were top notch. The pace was crisp and the jokes landed every time, thanks to tight direction and choreography by Kyle Vespestad.

Did I mention there were lots of great voices in this show? Daniel Gonzalez sang the role of Gomez exquisitely. Claire Gerig graced us with her gorgeous voice and perfect portrayal as the slinky, sultry Morticia. Madi White made great use of her soaring vocals as Wednesday. Caleb Freeman's Fester just kept growing on me, and he sang the role beautifully, particularly The Moon and Me. Freeman's Fester was great fun, and I was particularly moved when Fester was saying his good byes as he was about to blast off to the moon. The moment and the underscoring made me tear up.

Kellen Clinton was an outstanding Pugsley. His on pitch screams as Wednesday tightened his shackles on the rack in Pulled were perfect. Denver Frankhouser played Lurch well, with lots of low, guttural growls, and then finally surprising us with a song. I last saw Denver as Adam/Felicia in Priscilla - what a transformation, from drag to Lurch! Vonda Newby-Schuster's Grandma is a hoot! Spunky and sassy, she's quick with the one liners and advice.

Philip Hansen as Lucas, the love interest of Wednesday, and the straight laced son of uptight Mal and Alice Beineke, sang wonderfully. He had just the right amount of youthful enthusiasm and was the perfect foil for Madi White's angsty Wednesday. John Keckeisen's Mal, the classic overworked dad with a short fuse, shares the stage with the lovely Megan Parsley's Alice, the neglected wife who speaks in rhyme and tries to put on a sunny front to hide her sad inner life. They have great chemistry together, and all hell breaks loose when Alice drinks a truth serum meant for Wednesday. Parsley steals the show as she releases her inner demons and frustration, going from nice to naughty in an instant, with sublime vocals in Full Disclosure.

Performances run June 3rd - June 26th at the Crown Uptown. Friday and Saturday shows are at 8:00 PM, Sunday matinees are at 2:00 PM. Tickets for The Addams Family can be purchased either with dinner or without. Adult tickets range from $40-45 for dinner & show; $25-30 for show only. Student Tickets are only $10 for Show Only. Senior and military discounts are available. Tickets can be ordered at or by calling the box office at 316-612-7696.

Up next at the Crown Uptown? The Wedding Singer, which runs July 15th to August 7th.

From This Author - Paula Makar

Paula is very excited to be a Contributing Editor for! Paula earned her Master’s Degree in Theatre from Oklahoma State University, where she directed These Shining Lives and... (read more about this author)

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