Alberta Youth Theatre Collective reviews Louis St. Laurent's The Addams Family

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The Edmonton Journal is proud to host reviews of local high school theatrical productions, written by student reviewers through the Alberta Youth Theatre Collective. Reviews of past shows can be found here

By Anthony Saison
Mother Margaret Mary High School

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Are You Welcome to the Addams Family?

Welcome to the hilarious production by Louis St. Laurent theatre program. It was a fun, quirky, talent-filled production.

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The Addams Family musical, written by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice, with music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa, premiered in 2009. It is a delightfully dark and humorous theatrical experience. Set against the backdrop of the iconic Addams family mansion, the plot unfolds as daughter Wednesday falls in love with a “normal” boy, Lucas Beineke, sparking a series of hilariously macabre events. With its catchy tunes and witty lyrics, the musical captures the essence of Charles Addams’ original cartoons while adding its own theatrical flair. The production explores themes of love, acceptance, and the importance of staying true to oneself, all within the quirky world of the Addams family. With stellar performances and a visually stunning set design, The Addams Family musical is a must-see for fans of the classic characters and anyone seeking an evening of darkly comedic entertainment.

In his debut musical role, Paul Moreno illuminated the stage as Gomez Addams, exuding charm and charisma while captivating the audience with his robust vocals and flawless comedic timing. Sydney Boisvert, alongside Moreno, delivered a stunning portrayal of Morticia Addams, embodying her character’s stoic demeanour with precision and grace, her vocals resonating with celestial beauty. Together, Moreno and Boisvert crafted a mesmerizing portrayal of the iconic Addams couple, their chemistry palpable and their performances seamlessly intertwining to create an unforgettable theatrical experience. Amya Schreiber and Joshua Plamondon further enriched the production with their portrayal of young love, infusing the stage with passion and sincerity, particularly evident in their enchanting rendition of Crazier Than You.

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The technical elements of the show, encompassing props, costumes, and makeup, were exceptional, seamlessly transporting the audience into the captivating world of The Addams Family. Notably, Grandma Addams’ potion cart and Uncle Fester’s rocket ensemble showcased meticulous attention to detail. Each costume was evidently crafted with care, while the makeup, particularly for the ghosts, authentically conveyed the eerie essence of the characters. However, amidst the evident talent of the cast and crew, sound issues arose during the performance, with microphones occasionally drowned out by the music and a somewhat challenging sound mix during ensemble parts. Thankfully, adjustments made after the first act significantly improved the audio experience, enhancing the audience’s enjoyment for the remainder of the show.

Overall, Louis St. Laurent’s production of The Addams Family was an original and unique show with lots of hard work and dedication. It’s always so wonderful to watch my fellow actors, and peers create innovative works and this group of students did just that. I would love to see more shows from Louis St. Laurent’s in the future.

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Louis St. Laurent Addams Family
Louis St. Laurent High School production of Addams Family.Photos by Darla Woodley of Red Socks Photography.Alberta Youth Theatre Collective 2024 edm

By Leonie Habis
Mother Margaret Mary High School

The theatre program at Louis St. Laurent School performed a mysterious, spooky, and altogether ooky comedy musical The Addams Family. This show is a new comedy musical with music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa and written by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice. With the direction of Molly Danko, these students put on a frighteningly delightful show.

The musical The Addams Family follows a seemingly normal day of the Addams family. The plot unfolds when Wednesday Addams, the eldest child and daughter of Gomez and Morticia, falls in love with a boy, Lucas Beineke, who’s too “normal” to her family’s liking. This starts a series of hilarious and wacky events; all being told through catchy songs with amusing lyrics. This musical perfectly captures the sense of the original cartoons made by Charles Addams while adding its own theatrical twists. This production explores many themes of acceptance, love, and family within this wacky world. This show is a must-see for all those who enjoy comedies with darker themes or any enjoyers of the original Addams family franchises.

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The cast of this production did a wonderful job of capturing both the comedic and haunting themes of this show. Paul Moreno, playing Gomez Addams, had the great opportunity to be a lead in this show, even with this being their first one. Having no previous experience, they did a fantastic job at capturing Gomez’s personality and captivated the audience with their strong vocals and great character work. We can’t talk about Gomez without bringing up Morticia, played by Sydney Boisvert. They brought the character Morticia to life in this production with their beautiful voice and wonderful acting. Together, they captured the true love between this iconic pair. The ensemble of this show must be mentioned for their own character work and dedication for set changes and nailing the choreography on stage. A must-mention is Rebecca Dietrich, who stole the show with their expressions and dedication every moment they were on stage.

The technical aspects of this show really tied it together. The red lighting at the end of the first act, the great use of the mansion’s walls, and the perfectly made props were only a few aspects that stood out. Different settings were well depicted with a small amount of set pieces, and each piece was well made and did well at depicting the environment. The make-up, done by the actors, had the support of Patrycja Blicharz and Ola Kazala and really stood out to the audience. This was a job well done for the whole crew, especially stage manager Abbey Carfantan, alongside assistant stage managers Mackenzie Berdusco, Emma McGhee, and Rachael Peacock. This show wouldn’t have been what it is without their support.

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Louis St. Laurent’s production of The Addams Family was wonderfully done, and many would agree that it was a hilarious and entertaining watch. The show itself is a great depiction of the well-known Addams family, and this team presented it well.

Louis St. Laurent Addams Family
Louis St. Laurent High School production of Addams Family.Photos by Darla Woodley of Red Socks Photography.Alberta Youth Theatre Collective 2024 edm

By Chester Garrett
McNally High School

Off into the graveyard we go as we explore Louis St. Laurent’s production of The Addams Family! A spooky musical about the love between Wednesday Addams (played by Amya Schreiber) and Lucas Beineke (played by Joshua Plamondon). A hilarious performance about one normal night introducing the two families together, what could possibly go wrong?

This production had it all, from people in grades 8-12 to beautifully made costumes that represent each ensemble character perfectly of what they were in their past life. The main cast had stunningly accurate costumes to the original TV show. Gorgeous ghostly makeup that set the ensemble apart from the rest, and was all done by students! Creative use of props with the simple but effective set was paired with clean transitions from scene to scene. Last but not least the meaningful and effective lighting done by Raymi Snowden set the tone and mood for each scene and was always on time with the actors and music.

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Special shout out to Sydney Boisvert playing Morticia with her powerful solo song Just Around the Corner, and the entire ensemble with well-rehearsed dances that worked perfectly. To Cameron Brulotte for his absolutely hilarious performance of Uncle Fester. His physical comedy and comedic timing were really a highlight of the show. And Paul Moreno as Gomaz with wonderful vocals that impressed everyone, not to mention his wonderful stage chemistry with all of the characters, especially Boisvert.

Besides the odd microphone issue, this was a must-see if you are a fan of the original Addams family! Amazing job to everyone in the cast and crew!

Louis St. Laurent Addams Family
Louis St. Laurent High School production of Addams Family.Photos by Darla Woodley of Red Socks Photography.Alberta Youth Theatre Collective 2024 edm

By Marina Shenouda
Mother Margaret Mary High School

Sticking with your family is what makes it family. Louis St. Laurent’s The Addams Family showed audiences just how true that statement can be in a production full of darkness, hilarity, and heart.

The Addams Family is a musical comedy written by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice. The story follows a family that is obsessed with the dark and macabre, the Addams. When the Addams’ eldest child, Wednesday, falls in love with a kind boy from a “normal” home, Lucas, she implores her family to make a good first impression on his family. On top of that, Wednesday reveals to her father, Gomez, that she has plans to marry Lucas and demands that he keep it a secret from her mother, Morticia. Reluctantly, Gomez agrees in favour of keeping his daughter happy. Just how will dishonesty fester?

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Louis St. Laurent put a creative, heartfelt spin on this tale. Paul Moreno (Gomez Addams) charmed the audience with beautiful vocals and a character voice perfectly suited to his character. Even when Moreno was the only one on stage he was able to take up the entire space with swift movements and masterful comedic timing. Sydney Boisvert skillfully embodied Morticia Addams with bold line delivery and a commanding stage presence that sent chills through the crowd. Moreno and Boisvert brought out the best in one another on stage, creating a delightfully creepy and adoring husband and wife. Cameron Brulotte (Uncle Fester) had the audience hollering at the hilarious flair he brought to his character. Whether he was dancing while delivering his lines or running through the aisle to meet his love, the moon, Brulotte always made physical choices well-fitted to the goofy, sentimental uncle of the family.

The technical aspects of the show were very well executed. One feature that cannot be understated is the detailed appearance of the ensemble. The ensemble doubled as the dead ancestors that haunt the Addams residence. Each ensemble member had created a backstory for their death. This was evident in the intricate details in the costumes and makeup that reflected the people they were in life. The show’s lighting was particular and effectively conveyed the emotion of each scene. An example of this was during moments when Gomez would hide things from his wife; a spotlight would fall solely on him as he shared his anxieties with the audience. The set was composed of beautifully painted backdrops that expressed the eeriness of the Addams household.

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All in all, Louis St. Laurent’s production of The Addams Family was filled to the brim with talent. The technical and theatrical elements combined seamlessly to give the audience a frightening and hilarious experience. There was a clear amount of hard work put into this production and the cast and crew should be incredibly proud. Well done!

Louis St. Laurent Addams Family
Louis St. Laurent High School production of Addams Family.Photos by Darla Woodley of Red Socks Photography.Alberta Youth Theatre Collective 2024 edm

By Daniel Said Tanash
Mother Margaret Mary High School

When you’re an Addams, you gotta have a lot of passion; a statement held true by Louis St. Laurent School’s grim yet soulful and humourous performance of Addams Family: The Musical.

The show, by Andrew Lippa and Marshall Brickman, begins with the family’s ancestral ghosts being let out by Uncle Fester (Cameron Brulotte), however, they can’t return until “love triumphs.” This proves to be tricky as love is challenged throughout the family. Wednesday (Amya Schreiber) wants to marry a normal boy named Lucas Bienke (Joshua Plamondon) and Gomez (Paul Moreno) is forced to keep it secret from Morticia (Sydney Boisvert) lest it destroy their marriage. Louis St. Laurent triumphed in making the audience laugh with the comedy, thrilled with the musical numbers, and immersed with the technical elements.

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The character work was so riveting it felt like the characters were really there, enabling every line, especially comedic ones, to land and leave the audience roaring with laughter. Brulotte stood out with his ability to take absurdity, such as The Moon and Me, and play it with a straight face. Also, Evelyn Pohl, as Pugsley (and in the eighth grade) had powerful emotional moments despite her character craving torture. The audience was enamoured by the vocal performances despite some microphone difficulties. Every aspect of Moreno’s performance, including sword-fighting, was so on point, that it gave him a thunderous stage presence, especially in Happy/Sad. Also, Frances Ikokwu as Alice Beineke’s rendition of Waiting blew the audience off their feet. Boisvert’s line work made her capable of carrying a wide variety of feelings, enhanced with her stand-out vocals and dance moves. In Just Around the Corner, both she and Gabriel Whitling as Lurch danced with perfect synchronization despite Gabriel being essentially blindfolded. Of course, the ensemble cannot be forgotten. They had spine-chilling harmonies in The Moon and Me, and formed stage pictures together cleanly. Some actors were as young as seventh grade and they managed intense acrobatics and solid unity.

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The ensemble also had immaculate costumes done by Ireoluwa Oluwateniay Oke that clearly demonstrated the history of each character wordlessly and were paired with white makeup to make their faces pop. The cast as a whole had immaculate makeup thanks to the direction of Patrycja Blicharz and Ola Kazala. The lighting, done by Raymi Snowden, managed to aid in evoking whatever emotion was necessary, especially during the game of Full Disclosure. The show used a dynamic set designed by Robin Morgan that allowed the ghost stagehands to wheel around different walls to create different rooms with minimal set pieces, allowing instantaneous scene changes. The props crew knew what they were doing with fitting the Addams family, having large weaponry and even a chair with a trap. The stage manager Abbey Carfantan, assisted by Emma McGhee and Rachel Peacock, were able to bring the show together.

Overall, Addams Family: The Musical at Louis St. Laurent, with the sublime performances and tech, was the best kind of nightmare.

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