Stars explained: * A production of no real merit with failings in all areas. ** A production showing evidence of not enough time or effort, or even talent, and which never breathes any real life into the piece – or a show lumbered with a terrible script. *** A good enjoyable show which might have some small flaws but has largely achieved what it set out to do.**** An excellent show which shows a great deal of work and stage craft with no noticeable or major flaws.***** A four star show which has found that extra bit of magic which lifts theatre to another plane.
Half stars fall between the ratings

manor addams

The Addams Family - A new musical comedy

Manor Musical Theatre Company

Sutton Coldfield Town Hall


Its ten years now since The Addams Family, a new musical comedy, first appeared after its try out in 2009.The musical follows a recognised trend for taking well known TV or film formats and bolting on a bunch of songs.

Around the same time Legally Blonde, Shrek, 101 Dalmatians and even Bonnie and Clyde were getting the musical treatment so why not this much loved TV programme.

Originally screened in the 1960s this mad cap story of a ghoulish family was based on a newspaper cartoon made back in 1938 and also then had a big screen reboot in 1991. Andrew Lippa was responsible for creating the songs for the book written by Marshall Brickman and Rick Ellis.

At the head of this spooky family is Gomez, played here by Mark Skett in his first show with the Manor Company. Gomez is the swashbuckling Latin husband devoted to his gothic wife.

Mr Skett made a very good debut and was highly entertaining in the role. Morticia played brilliantly by Beth Hooper is the deathly pale wife and mother to daughter Wednesday and son Pugsley.

Beth proved to have a great voice and managed to keep a very straight face during some very funny moments. Karrise Willetts was daughter Wednesday, around who the story centres. Wednesday has fallen for a normal, ordinary young man and is intent on keeping the secret of their possible marriage from her mother.

Karrise's excellent voice and performance was matched by Tom Lafferty as Lucas her love interest. Tom was another performer making his stage debut with Manor.

Adding to the ghoulish fun was Andy Hooper as Uncle Fester who bravely self-accompanied himself on several musical numbers and Kate Dyer as Grandma. Said to be 102, Grandma trundles around the house with her potions apparently hiding out in the loft and smoking illegal substances.     

Jack Dolaghan was the son Pugsley yet another player to be making an excellent debut on the night. Megan Daniels threatened to steal the show as Alice, Lucas’s mother with her part in the song Full Disclosure which calls for her transformation from timid housewife to sexy diva after accidently drinking a potion.

Miss Daniels has a powerful voice and being yet again another to make her debut for Manor, proved herself to be a very worthy addition to the company. There was also great support from Richard Parry as Mal her husband and James Dolaghan as the gloomy Lurch.

With an additional 23 other performers making up the ghostly ancestors this is one big production.

There was no expense spared either in a high quality 12 piece orchestra led by Conductor Tim Harding or the fantastic set and the spectacular range of ghostly and gothic costumes. All this was a massive undertaking by the company and the detail and commitment to quality by Directors Pam and James Garrigton was evident.

The Manor Musical Theatre Company has spared no expense it seems in bringing this highly entertaining musical to the Sutton Stage.   It’s a fun production that’s deserves greater support and even though we might be a long way from Halloween, go see it, as it’s a Hell of a Night. To 23-03-19

Jeff Grant


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