The Addams Family
Book By Marshall Brickman And Rick Elice
Music And Lyrics By Andrew Lippa
Hundreds of years ago, the Addams family ancestors came from the old country and settled on a plot of land in what is now New York’s Central Park. This was, of course, long before it was a park, when it was still wilderness. The family flourished for many generations, and eventually, a huge house was built where a great Spanish oak, the Addams Family Tree, had been planted to protect the ancestral graves from such annoyances as sunlight and tourists.
As the curtain rises, the last dead leaf of autumn falls from the Family Tree, and all is right with the morbid, macabre world of Gomez, Morticia, Fester, Grandma, Wednesday, Pugsley and Lurch. They’ve gathered – where else? – in the family graveyard, to celebrate life and death in a yearly ritual to connect with their past and ensure their future.
They seem at peace, not just with each other and their inimitable, unchanging Addams-ness, but with their dead ancestors, too – who emerge from their graves on this night each year to join in this celebration of continuity. But, at the end of the ritual, Fester blocks the ancestors’ return to their graves. Those unchanging Addams family values are about to be tested.
Fester enlists their help to set things right, just in case a new family secret goes terribly wrong. What’s the secret?
Wednesday Addams, that irresistible bundle of malice, has grown up and found love. So what’s the problem? The young man, Lucas Beineke, is from Ohio, and his parents are coming to dinner to meet the family.
Two different worlds are about to collide. Will love triumph, or will everyone go home vaguely depressed? Gomez and Morticia are understandably wary. Wednesday is their baby, even if she is eighteen.
Their doubts bloom into actual terror when they eavesdrop on Wednesday, who, in the midst of her afternoon play-date with Pugsley, refuses to torture her brother and involuntarily bursts into song – extolling all things bright and beautiful as love pulls her in an entirely new, and cheerful, direction.
Like any parents faced with a child in terrible trouble, Gomez and Morticia wonder, “Where did we go wrong?”
Wednesday begs her parents not to cancel the dinner, and exhorts the entire family to act as ‘normal’ as possible when Lucas and his parents arrive. She loves her family just the way they are, but they clearly fall outside the realm of what the Middle-American Beinekes are used to, and Wednesday’s afraid that, if his parents don’t approve of her, they’ll take Lucas back to Ohio, and she’ll never see him again.
Like any unconditionally loving family, the Addams’ promise to do their best to oblige, while, lost somewhere in Central Park, young Lucas asks his parents to resist any judgments and all conflicts, so both families can enjoy one normal night.
An eventful evening is about to begin.