Recently, it has not been uncommon to hear music, dance, and laughter steadily flowing from the Auditorium right after school gets out. The theater department is getting ready for that beloved time of the year when the auditorium lights glow late at night, friends gather, and the Annual Franklin Musical performs. This year, the Addams Family production is coming to stage at Franklin High School!
First produced in 2010, The Addams Family is anything but normal. Stated best by the site StageAgent, “To be sad is to be happy, to feel pain is to feel joy, and death and suffering are the stuff of their dreams.” The story follows a unique family, obsessed with the bizarre and disgusted by anything and all that is ordinary. No character is the same. When Wednesday, the family’s cherished daughter, falls for a smart, lovable and conventional boy, Lucas Beineke, the family must learn to embrace change. This story proves that even the most unusual families can struggle with the most usual predicaments.
Although this years’ production maintains the usual air of excitement, there are also some changes that have been made to the musical. Unusual to past productions, the musical will be performed in the fall. This allows for space in between the musical and Arts Alive, a yearly performance exhibiting students’ art from the school year. But it also serves as an opportunity to create a halloween-themed performance. Josh Forsythe, the theater department’s director and acting teacher says, “we were looking for a good fall-oriented production, and we knew we were going to be performing it right around Halloween. And then, as soon as I heard the [Addam’s Family] music, I was sold.”
This year is also unusual because the script and music are current, as opposed to last year’s production, which was set in 1958. “I’m excited for an audience to see a contemporary story. We haven’t done one in the last three years, so it’s going to be fun to do something that’s modern,” says Forsythe. “The music for this production is closer to rock and roll than what a classical musical would be.”
Behind the performance, the story, and the music, this yearly production also creates a wonderful community. Emma Sanders (12) has been in Franklin theater for four years and is playing Uncle Fester, a quirky guy who falls in love with the moon. She says, “What’s really cool about the Franklin Theater Department is that it’s so quick and easy to bond with people. I think it’s a great way to make friends and create tight, tight bonds.” This community is part of what helps the performances succeed. “There are multiple people bringing ideas, multiple things that are being figured out, and then everything can just come together in a really fun, organic way,” Forsythe states.
The Addams Family debuts on November 8th at 7pm. Buy your tickets to witness the hard work that the theater department has put into the show, and enjoy a great performance. Lauren Haendler (11), playing Morticia, the “fun, sexy, edgy” head of the family, says, “Come into the show expecting to laugh, but also be touched because even though it’s a comedy, there’s a lot of really beautiful messages behind it at the end of the day.”