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Sword & Shield

The Student News Site of Vel Phillips Memorial

Getting to Know the Cast of The Addams Family

The spring musical is just around the corner! After construction reduced the size of the musical for the single set, musical medley All Night Strut last year, VPM Drama is back in full force with multiple fabulous sets, songs, and a brand new auditorium with The Addams Family. To get prepared for the largest return scale for the Spring Musical since before 2020, I sat down with the main cast of The Addams Family (minus a couple) and asked them some questions in order to see what to expect. 


Describe the Musical in a Single Sentence

Claire (Morticia): A quirky, dark love story. 


Elliot (Pugsley): To quote the musical, it’s “a dinner party turned into a night from hell.”


Aidan (Gomez): It’s like if The Addams Family was a musical. 


Ben (Mal): I think he got it, I think we can move on.

What is Your Favorite Song in the Musical?

Citlali (Grandma): Oh, god, it changes every week. Secrets, I think, is my current favorite. I wake up with that song in my head, it’s really, really good.


Elliot: My favorite one to listen to is Secrets, my favorite song to sing in is Move Towards the Darkness.


Olivia (Alice): Obviously, I’m going to say my solo, Waiting (laughs), but I’m also gonna say the instrumentals for Tango De’Amor, because it’s just (chef’s kiss). 


Sammy (Wednesday): I really like me some Happy, Sad because it just really tugs at the heartstrings. I cry when Aidan sings it, I cry when I hear it, it’s just so good. 


Claire: I think mine would probably be Happy, Sad or Just Around The Corner, which is one of my songs, which is just this really morbid song that Morticia’s singing to try to cheer herself up, but she’s just saying things that are really quite destructive (laughs). It’s just a fun one to sing.


Aidan: I really like Waiting, it sounds so interesting and it’s very different from a lot of the others. I also like Secrets, the classic. 


Ben: I have two. Neither of them are songs I’m in. First: When You’re an Addams, which is a perfect opening to the musical. It introduces all of the Addams and then the ancestors come in and– it’s just (chef’s kiss x2) perfect. Or Trapped, Aidan’s song, the staging is hilarious, it’s just so good. 


Jamie: I like Waiting, and Happy Sad, and Just Around the Corner, and…


Aidan: Just say all of the songs. 

What has been your Favorite Moment Preparing For the Musical?

Citlali: The mocktail party. It wasn’t exactly a cast party because it was before the production, but it was essentially all the girls hanging out and then the boys crashed it and overall, I’d say it was just super fun and everyone was super nice.


Elliot: I really like the first time we ran through the show, where everyone was clapping for everyone else and everybody, like, messed up in some funny way. And we all just laughed it off because it was our first time, you know?


Olivia: I think the bows was really cool and that’s going to sound really stupid because it’s just one scene, but like, it really just cemented that we’re such a community now and it’s so cool because you just feel the excitement and the positivity of everyone. It’s been really cool to just be a part of this, especially as my first musical, and kind of feel that sense of community. 


Sammy: I’ve really enjoyed just doing and seeing all of the choreography. It’s super nice having the choreographer just tell you what to do and have these things planned out. It’s honestly just so fun getting to dance with a bunch of people, and really seeing it all come together. Even in dances I’m not in– I walked in on Morticia’s choreography for her song, and it just looks so cool and I think it’s just going to be so fun to watch on stage. 


Claire: Yeah, I think choreo has been one of my favorites too, just because I’ve grown up as a dancer, and it’s been really fun to get back into that. But also, it’s been seeing everybody’s voices get better as we’ve kind of rehearsed more and more. I’m a Soprano 2, which means that I usually sing in the middle of my range to the higher side, and I sing this whole show in my chest voice, really low, so it’s this weird dynamic that I walked in like, “I don’t know how to do this.” And then to be able to kind of witness that from before and compare it to what I can do now– I think it’s just made me really proud of myself and how I’ve grown.


Aidan:  I don’t have a specific moment, but it’s just been so wonderful seeing everybody work on this show as a team, figure things out, grow as performers and musicians and friends and all these other things together.


Ben: It’s not one moment, but it’s every time we do a scene in this room or another room and just everyone just applauds. We don’t have to do that. We can just move on, and just let the directors talk. But everyone just wants to clap because everyone’s doing so great. 


Jamie: First off, I would like to change my answer to the last question to The Moon and Me. I just thought of that song. I love it. And as for a favorite moment, the mocktail was so much fun. Just hanging out with everyone in a non-Addams family setting and getting to know people, having fun, pulling a prank on Tommy (laughs).

Which Character Are You Most Like in the Musical?

Citlali: I would have to say the Grandma, who I’m playing. I’d like to say I just morph into her to get into character, but no, I am her, she is me, we are one.


Elliot: I’m probably most like Wednesday. I’m the oldest in my family, and yes, I do torture my little brother.


Olivia: I feel like they did such a good job on the casting that, like, half the people are actually, like the characters that they were cast as. So I’m going to say Alice, just because my ditziness shows a lot (laughs). 


Sammy: It’s funny that Elliot says they feels more like Wednesday, because I feel more like Pugsley. I love my older sister so much. I would follow her wherever she went. And that’s a very core characteristic of Pugsley, I think. 


Claire: I don’t really know! I think there is sort of the motherly, doting, sort of dramatic side to Morticia that I can relate to. But I don’t know, I think probably Wednesday would be my thing. Kind of for the same reasoning as Elliot, as an older sister who understands what it’s like to have annoying siblings, as well that wanting to make her own path in the world and be like, “Excuse me, parents like, you don’t get to decide for me anymore” that Wednesday has.


Aidan: I’d probably say Gomez, because I think we’re slowly turning into the same person. I already speak Spanish randomly, and pretty soon, I think I’m just going to go full out and live in Central Park.


Ben: I feel like I’m a little bit of a combination between Lucas and Fester, who sadly is not here. But, yeah, because I feel like I’m a bit normal, but at the same time, I’m also Fester, who is just there and you’re just, like, what’s his deal?


Jamie: I think I’m like Alice. I don’t know why. And I don’t like it. I’m also like Fester, because I think the moon is really cool.

Seniors, how does The Addams Family compare to your previous years of being in VPM Drama?

Citlali: I think it’s a big improvement, honestly. The last years were amazing with what we were given. But this year, I feel like we were given much more resources, because not only do we get a new musical director that Ms. McMahon already knew that she would work well with, we have a new choreographer, a new costume designer, a bigger budget this year, I believe, AND we also have a brand new auditorium. So with all these amazing new adults, it really, really came together and it really felt new in a good way. 


Sammy: Yeah, we definitely had a lot more resources that we didn’t have before, and I think we also have a lot of talented underclassmen that came in and made the community really fun. Also, the auditorium was really nice to see and I’m really excited to perform the first musical there. I think it’ll be pretty exciting.


Claire:  I came here in Junior year, so I didn’t do anything last year, so this is my first production here at VPM, which is exciting. But from what I’ve seen, it really looks like everyone’s really excited this year to be back doing a big thing.


Aidan: It’s been great watching the drama program grow over the years. Like, I remember back a few years ago, we didn’t have as many resources as we do now. We didn’t have as many spaces which we could use. But now, as the school grows, and construction subsides a little bit, we have access to all these spaces and new staff and all these people helping us out. It’s just a lot of fun. It’s really awesome. 

What is One Thing You Want Everyone to Know About The Addams Family Before They See It?

Citlali: Honestly, just please come and watch it. We had a ton of fun putting it together and I just want people to come watch it and see how much fun we had on stage…. I can’t even describe how grateful I am to have worked on this with so many other amazing people and classmates. I can’t imagine having spent my time after school any way else. 


Elliot: We, as leads, and the ensemble spent a lot of time finding mini stories and different interpretations of the scenes, so if you have a friend in the ensemble, watch their character! They’ve spent a lot of time figuring out who they are and how they can act more like them when they’re just saying “Yes,” or “No,” or dancing, so pay attention to that.


Olivia: It’s been so cool to watch how passionate everyone has been about their characters, and just how cool development-wise this has been– I think it’s such a cool musical to see, it’s got fourth wall breaks and audience participation, but also it’s been such a passion project of so many people putting time and effort into it… I definitely recommend coming and watching it, and seeing all of the cool stuff we put together!


Sammy: I think people have been having a lot of fun putting it together… We’re all just out there, having fun on stage, and I think that energy is gonna go out into the audience. 


Claire: I’m just gonna echo what everyone else has said– the amount of time we have put in collectively to develop this outside of rehearsal time has made this really special… This isn’t just something we’re all doing on the side, this is actually something we’re all really devoted to and want to see succeed. 


Aidan: If you would like to see a very unique show put on by a very specific group of people who will never work on something together again– this will never happen again, and you don’t want to miss such an amazingly unique performance. 


Ben: You get to see 50 people on stage all collectively work together on stage to make this piece of art for 4 days, and there’s so much stuff in it– I don’t think there’s ever a time where someone’s gonna be bored while watching the show. 


Jamie: Ditto. 


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Max Knight, Opinions Editor
Max Knight is a junior and has been writing articles for Sword & Shield since his sophomore year. He loves writing pieces of all kinds and, as the Opinions editor at Sword & Shield this year, he hopes to provide engaging and entertaining articles on topics both big and small. When not in school, Max loves movies, both watching and making them, playing games, and hanging out with friends.
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