Audiences and judges love you “When You’re an Addams”
Posted on 06/05/2019
Cast in ghoulish Addams Family costumes on the set of the Addam's Family mansion


“The Addams Family: School Edition” at Osbourn Park High School (OPHS) featured a cast of over 50 students dressed as an array of macabre characters, all under the direction of Theatre Teacher Christine Maxted. The orchestra pit was directed by Band Director Jeffrey J. Kuchan.

The musical follows the Addams Family in their dark, terrifying mansion that is somehow tucked away in plain sight in Central Park. Wednesday Addams (Emma Brush), who typically identifies closer to a princess of darkness than a “girl next door,” has grown up and finds herself engaged to a sweet, smart young man from a respectable family, one that her parents have never met. Enter, Lucas Beineke (Carlos Noel). When it comes time for the macabre Addams’ and the all-American Beineke’s to meet, it becomes apparent to Wednesday that their night will be anything but normal. Wednesday attempts to save the evening by begging her doting father, Gomez Addams (Derrian Brown), not to tell her harsh yet delicate mother that she and Lucas are engaged. Now, Gomez Addams must do something he’s never done before – keep a secret from his beloved wife, Morticia (Providence Bonney).

An evening of chaos ensues as Lucas’ parents, Alice (Sarah Vaughan) and Mal (Parker Sutherland) Beineke attempt normal conversation at a dinner table surrounded by not only Gomez, Morticia, and Wednesday, but with the peculiar Fester Addams (Luke Padilla), the youngest Addams, Pugsley (Eve Courney), and Grandma Addams (Meredith Maneno) as well. 

The Addams and Beineke families shared the stage with a lively cast of ancestors, various dancers, trees, and even the moon (solo dancer, Emilia Gregory). And of course, the Addams family could not function without their monotone monster of a doorman, Lurch (Connor Pang). 

“The Addams Family” Standout

While the set was mesmerizing, with working turntables that revealed different parts of the mansion and empty picture frames that were utilized by ensemble actors to create tableaus in the background of each scene, the true standout was the sense of ensemble.

The large cast did an incredible job of creating believable, likable characters. From the Gomez family leads down to each and every ancestor, there was a sense of backstory. It was amazing to watch as the ancestors acted not only as ensemble voices, and dancers, but also crew members, moving the set throughout scenes. The ancestors were even a part of some scenes as trees, wearing tree trunks around their waists, swaying quietly behind the action. Kudos to not only the directing team who supported the actors in their efforts, but to the actors themselves who took the time to seriously think through every detail of their character, no matter how big or how small.

The Production Team

One of the things that no doubt made the production so successful was the introduction of a varied production team that featured members of local Prince William County performing arts organizations. Students worked with Laura Mills from Prince William Little Theatre as assistant director, Leslie Vidal of Upper Room Theatre Ministries and the Academy of Russian Ballet as choreographer, James Maxted of Prince William Little Theatre as set advisor, Kevin Curry of AKT3 as lighting designer, and Sarah Jane Scott of Grace United Methodist as vocal director.

Cappie Nominations

The show not only pleased audiences, but Cappie critics as well. The Cappies program trains theatre and journalism students as critics, who then attend each other’s shows.

The show earned the following Cappie Award nominations:

  • Nathan Rankin and Ava Foster for “Hair and Make-Up”
  • Daryn Smolen and the cast for “Costumes” 
  • The OPHS Theatre Tech Classes for “Sets” 
  • Maddy Sifford and Natalie Todd for “Stage Management”
  • Luke Padilla for “Best Comic Actor in a Musical” 

Derrian Brown, who portrayed Gomez Addams in the production, was selected to perform onstage during the 20th Annual Cappies Gala, held in May, during which Nathan Rankin and Ava Foster won the 2019 Cappie for “Hair and Make-Up.”