As a master of the macabre and a designer of the dark, Charles Addams delighted the world of cartooning with the characters he named “The Addams Family.” The subject of over 1000 cartoons, two live-action television shows, two animated television series, several books and a trio of motion pictures, Addams drew his signature characters for five decades and one would be hard pressed not to have some acquaintance with Morticia, Uncle Fester, Lurch the butler, Gomez, Grandma, Wednesday, Pugsley and Thing who all lived in a spooky mansion on a hill.
Prepare now for the national tour of “The Addams Family” that will be flying in and haunting the happy stage of the Bushnell for the Performing Arts from Tuesday, February 21 to Sunday, February 26 when the musical comedy comes to Hartford.
With timeless universal themes, grim and gruesome and yet gleeful, Addams was a genius at helping us laugh at all things scary. By making fun of our fears, he felt we reduce them to manageable beasts.
In the musical coming from Broadway, we find little Wednesday is now a grown-up 18 year old with, yikes, a boyfriend. Not a boyfriend who is eccentric or bizarre or feels at home in graveyards, but one who is frighteningly normal. When Wednesday confesses to her father Gomez that she is in love, she makes him promise to keep it a secret, a secret not only from the world at large, but from the person closest to Gomez’s heart, his wife and Wednesday’s mother, Morticia.
How long before the jig is up and the black cat is out of the bag can be marked on the calendar: the date when Wednesday’s boyfriend and his parents, clothed in all their normality, sit down for dinner with the Addams clan.
This new musical comedy has been created by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elise, with music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa and choreography by Sergio Trujillo, with direction/design by Phelm McDermott and Julian Crouch and production supervision by Jerry Zaks.
For tickets ($17-80), call the Bushnell, 166 Capitol Avenue, Hartford at 860-987-5900 or online at www.bushnell.org. Performances are Tuesday-Thursday at 7:30 p.m., Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.
Get those fingers snapping as the sinister is imbued with silliness and the creepy becomes cleverly comic when the Addams Family comes to Hartford.