Out & About

Perry Players’ “Addams Family Musical” is frightfully funny

Duh, duh, duh, duh. Snap, snap.

If the familiar phrasing brings to mind creepy, kooky, mysterious and ooky, then the “Addams Family Musical,” which opened Thursday, is a must see at the Perry Players.

The cast transforms into the characters of Gomez, Morticia, Wednesday, Pugsley, Uncle Fester, Grandma, Lurch and ghosts of ancestor Addams with costumes that are quite elaborate.

It takes the actors and actresses two and a half hours to get into makeup and costume, director Hunter Hufnagel said.

The outfits took a team of four costume designers 10 weeks to perfect.

Male and female ancestors cover the gambit of eras including flapper girls, prom queens, Roman soldiers and Victorian gentlemen. Garbed in all white, with powered hair, white face paint and blacked-out eyes, the cast of 27 ghouls, ghosts and zombies were convincingly dead as they danced and sang.

“The history of the world told in agony and dismemberment,” Gomez Addams tells Mal Beineke during drinks.

Gomez is played by Christopher Kemp and Mal Beineke is played by Mark Anthony.

More than 100 people auditioned for the cast. Hufnagel said that the success of the musical “Oliver!” last year was one of the reasons he wanted to do another musical, but this time, a more modern one.

“It’s perfect all the way around,” Hufnagel said.

The “Addams Family Musical” started on Broadway in 2010 with Nathan Lane cast as Gomez Addams.

“I’m trying to be Lane-esque,” Kemp said.

Kemp’s accent and his mannerisms all fit the part as he plays the head of the Addams household. One of Kemp’s favorite parts is the dinner scene where he recounts a dream in which he is a goat.

His wife and children are also in the play and the family gets ready together.

With the makeup on and the set done, Kemp said it adds something to playing the character after practicing the lines so many times.

“It’s something we’ll always remember,” he said.

Carol Strandburg plays the part of Grandma and with her striped socks, hunched back and crazy antics -- at times she steals the show.

Alice Beineke, played by Tami Daniels, in her sunny yellow dress, will have the audience in stitches with her lines that somehow always rhyme.

The story centers around Wednesday and her boyfriend Lucas Beineke, a normal boy from Ohio. Wednesday is played by Audrey Burkes and Chandler Shearin plays the part of Lucas. Lucas and his family are coming to dinner at the Addams’ house for the two families to meet. Wednesday asks her father to keep a secret from her mother and from there, the laughs continue until the final bow.

“It is one of the funniest and most fun shows ever,” Hufnagel said.

“The Addams Family Musical”

When: 7:30 p.m. July 17-18, 23-25, 31 and Aug. 1; 2:30 p.m. July 19 and 26

Where: Perry Players Community Theatre, 901 Main St., Perry

Cost: $18 adults; $15 seniors, military, children and students

Information: www.perryplayers.org; 478-987-5354

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