Many timeless characters have graced the Lakewood High School stage over the years. Belle and the Beast made an appearance in 2013. Audiences saw Dorothy in Oz in 2016. This year, it’s, well, Cousin Itt. Lakewood High School's theater department will be tackling the hilariously morose characters of the sitcom “The Addams Family” beginning Friday, Nov. 1.
The story revolves around daughter Wednesday, who has fallen in love with a "normal" boy. She has become secretly engaged to him, but is scared to tell her overprotective mother, Morticia. Instead, she chooses to confide in her father, Gomez, who is then stuck between lying to his wife or breaking his daughter's confidence.
Put this storyline against the backdrop of the one night every year that all of the Addams family ancestors come back to life for one night, and let the chaos and shenanigans ensue.
While the recently released animated film is geared more toward children, this musical is intended for all ages.
"Typically, this show is a little more bawdy, shall we say?" director Amanda Smith said. "We have toned down the language and some of the jokes to make it more family-friendly because that's important to us. I laugh heartily through every single rehearsal – it's one of the funniest shows I have ever directed."
Delivering many of the jokes is newcomer Garrett Backe, as Gomez Addams. He's a recent transfer student and landed the lead role in his first-ever Lakewood production.
"The students have really welcomed me," Backe said. "I am super excited to get to share the stage with so many talented people. This show is going to be amazing."
The cast also will be doing something special to help promote the production. They will be at a meet-the-cast event Halloween night at Lake Odessa Public Library during trick-or-treat hours.
"We wanted to reach out to the community and personally invite them to our show. And what better way than to give them candy and coupons?" Smith said, "We are so grateful that the library agreed to this idea. They were even more excited than the students, I think."
Tickets ($10 for adults, $8 for students) are available online at lakewoodhsdrama.com or by calling the reservation hotline, 708-61DRAMA. Shows are Friday Nov. 1, at 7 p.m.; Saturday Nov. 2, at 3 and 7 p.m.; and Sunday Nov. 3 at 3 p.m.