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Jenkintown’s Addams Family: A Haunted Delight

Cappies Review

A heartwarming, hilarious, spooky musical- and Fester in love with the moon- what more could one ask for? Ghoulish faces, creative costuming choices, and intriguing performances  transformed Jenkintown Middle/High School’s stage into the Addams family’s ghostly, dramatic home.

The Addams Family musical, depicting a macabre family who prides themselves in honesty, explores what it means to love, grow, and change as a family. The matriarch and patriarch of the family, Morticia and Gomez, are set in their dark ways, as are many dead Ancestors before them, but their daughter Wednesday is growing up and falling in love with a boy from Ohio. 

Wednesday begs for one normal night when her parents meet her boyfriend’s parents, and then all hell breaks loose. Though a haunted extreme, this is a story about love and merging two families into one, no matter how different they may be. 

Jenkintown’s production was brought to life- well, death- by the Addams family’s main living members- Morticia, Gomez, Wednesday, Pugsley, Uncle Fester, and Grandma all with individual personalities, voices, and demeanors. The complicated Beineke family added depth to the dynamics as well, the son Lucas’ (Nick Sobeleski ‘24) youthful, earnest, and cheery disposition a stark difference to Wednesday’s (Catherine Smith ‘24) morbid personality. 

Memorable performances include Celia DeFazio ‘24 as Morticia with a stunning voice and compelling acting, especially in “Just Around the Corner” when she comforted herself with the exciting thought of- you guessed it- death. 

Peter Schloth’s ‘24 Spanish accent and charming personality as Gomez never wavered, and Wednesday, played by Catherine Smith, captured the confusion of loving someone who’s so vastly different from you in “Crazier Than You”. Alana Schloth ‘26 who played Pugsley, physically embodied the character brilliantly with a hunched walk, and her song “What If” filled the stage with a younger brother’s fear of losing his sister, despite the seemingly strange lyrics. 

Teddy Standlick ‘24 as Fester added an endearing touch to the show as he fell in love with the moon and wove the Ancestors and the family together with his commentary. Not many props were necessary, due to the Ancestors’ unique dances and movements as an ensemble, giving the stage the glow it needed in “The Moon and Me” and becoming portraits when the Beineke family arrived at the house. 

Other highlights include Riley Boyle ‘26 as Grandma, a conniving but loving member of the household and Brenna Calahan ‘25 as Alice, earning a laugh every time she stepped forward to recite an overly cheerful poem. 

In the lobby of the auditorium was a masterful hand-made Addams Family photo cut-out board, where the audience could take pictures to remember the show. A simple but well organized program with a spooky cover was also crafted by Jenkintown’s Marketing team. Actors’ voices were sometimes lost in the songs partially due to volume of mics, and the ensemble was often overpowering, but this didn’t hinder the performances vastly. 

Lastly, Peter Schloth designed and built an intricate torture device for Pugsley, which was incredibly funny and convincing. 

Overall, Jenkintown Middle/High School artfully crafted a lovable performance about family and change with hilarious, sad, and very human moments, giving The Addams Family a depth that doesn’t have to do with darkness. 

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