Addam's Family Production Reflections

 

The Addam's Family College Production has had to be cancelled due to Covid-19 concerns, however nothing will keep the production family down!

To celebrate the show that would have been, the lead cast members have given us an insight into their characters, the show and the production itself. 

“It’s family first and family last and family by and by.”


Lead Cast Reflections 

Thom West

Year 10

Gomez Addams

 

 

  • Who is your character? Tell us a bit about them.

    My character is Gomez Addams, the Dad. He’s sort of like the man of the house, but not in charge if that makes sense because there’s no mistaking that Morticia’s definitely the one who’s pulling all the strings. He’s also a real family man. He really loves Morticia and would do almost anything to get her approval. He really loves his kids. He just cares about everyone and it’s a really genuine sort of care which I think is really cool because not only is he this creepy weirdo, but he’s a loving, creepy weirdo which makes him even better. 

  • What is your favourite quote or lyric from your character?

    There’s a part in the show where the Beineke’s are first meeting the Addams’ and Gomez comes on stage holding a sword and interrupts them. Then the Beineke’s ask: “where are these people even from?” and Gomez responds with: “where are we from? Funny you should ask”. He then proceeds to rant about the Spanish Inquisition and about his ancestry and one of my favourite lines in that monologue is: “only to surface on the shore of Florida. A harsh land filled with rattlesnakes, coyotes and many retired Jewish people”. When I first read that line, I cracked up laughing. I couldn’t even finish it. I thought it was so funny and so random and I guess what made it funnier at the time was that I was screaming it so I was very angrily shouting about the Spanish Inquisition and then I just see ‘many retired Jewish people”. You can imagine how funny that was to me. 

  • Are there any themes in the show that particularly resonate with you?

    Absolutely. The feeling of not particularly being mainstream. I myself don’t really like the majority of what the majority likes if that makes sense. Also, that sense of being an outcast. I didn’t have a lot of friends in Primary School. I was a bit of a loner. I really resonate with that in this show. I really appreciate the whole thing of being weird and outcast and together. I really like that.

  • What was your favourite moment of the Production process?

    Definitely all of us going to Kirra’s house and reading through the script. That was such a fun time. Just really nice and awesome to all hang out outside of school and still be doing production stuff. I really liked that, it was really, really fun.

  • What are some challenges you faced? How did you overcome these challenges?

    Gomez talks with an accent because he’s Spanish and for the first bit of being Gomez I didn’t really feel confident that I was doing a good job at the accent. So, what I would do is I would start off reading my lines in my normal voice and then gradually go more Spanish and eventually I just became confident enough to just start immediately with the Spanish accent. I had to realise that nobody else in the cast was thinking “he’s doing such a terrible job”. They all seemed to be my friends so they must think I’m doing a great job!

  • What do you think is something we truly celebrate about this show?

    Honestly, that it just happened. I could feel definitely that the combination of people in the cast, we all definitely had chemistry with each other and we all really worked well. Also, the fact that once it was announced that the show was cancelled, nobody threw blame, nobody got really angry, it was a really genuine, sad thing. I really like that there was no anger and no blame thrown around because I think that shows a really high level of maturity amongst the cast.

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Mollie Chaundy

Year 11

Morticia Addams

 

 

  • Who is your character? Tell us a bit about them.

    My character’s name is Morticia Addams. She is strong, independent and a very beautiful woman. She is wise and very level-headed.  She is the wife of Gomez Addams and the mother to Wednesday and Pugsley Addams. 

  • What is your favourite quote or lyric from your character?

    My favourite quote is when she tells Wednesday, “Normal is an illusion darling. What is normal for the spider is a calamity for the fly.”

  • Are there any themes in the show that particularly resonate with you?

    The theme of family really resonates with me as family is incredibly important to me. I have a warm and large family, like the Addams do, and I believe the Addams have family morals and values that all families should share. 

  • What was your favourite moment of the production process?

    My favourite moment of the production process that we got up to was singing and acting through the opening number with the entire cast. It sent goose bumps through my body, and as the choreography and singing became one, it was the best feeling in the entire world. I miss it very much.

  • What are some challenges you faced? How did you overcome these challenges?

    I faced challenges when trying to grasp Morticia’s story, as she is a serious character in the beginning and I wasn’t sure on how to act seriously and wise, but still be interesting enough to watch. I am used to acting as more smiley, more jolly characters and it was a really big challenge for me to become inner Morticia – I did get there in the end though!

  • What do you think should be something we truly celebrate about this show?

    The fact that the entire cast and teachers created positive thoughts and feelings towards the bad news and created a special memory for the show is what we should celebrate. We were faced with a harsh reality, but we all worked through it amazingly.  

  • Anything else you would like to add?

    John Paul College’s, The Addams Family Production of 2020 still lives!!

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Kirra Strickleton 

Year 12

Wednesday Addams

 

  • Who is your character? Tell us a bit about them.

    My character in The Addams Family is Wednesday Friday Addams, sister to Pugsley Addams and eldest child and only daughter of Morticia and Gomez Addams. She is a strong, intelligent, independent, crazy young lady who loves her family but moreso loves to torture her brother. 

  • What is your favourite quote or lyric from your character?

    There are so many good lines and lyrics to choose from too hard to nail it down to one. My two favourite lines are: “Pugsley, could you just go away and die?”. I love this line because it really shows how Wednesday is like every other teenager who has a young sibling who annoys them. “And you’re not crazy enough! That’s the problem!”. I love this line because Lucas called Wednesday crazy and she spits this back to prove the only way they can be together is if he is just as crazy as she is. My favourite lyric to sing is: “It’s family first and family last and family by and by” I love this lyric because it wasn’t just the main cast that sung it. It was the whole cast ensemble and it reflects on the Ngargee Family as a whole and the community we would do anything for.

  • Are there any themes in the show that particularly resonate with you?

    The theme of being yourself no matter what really resonates with me because I believe everyone should feel comfortable being themselves and not be judged or ashamed to do so. Also, the theme of growing up, playing Wednesday and seeing the character grow through the script resonates with me as I’m growing up as well and as much as my parents want me to stay their little girl they also have to let me find my own wings.

  • What was your favourite moment of the production process?

    My favourite moment in the production process was probably seeing all the lead roles really come to life with their characters, as well as the lead cast really connecting. The Addams family and the Beineke family really looked like small families because we all got along so well.

  • What are some challenges you faced? How did you overcome these challenges?

    Some challenges I faced at the start of the production process was really understanding how much depth my character has. On the outside Wednesday seems like a gothic teenager but she is so much more than that. When she loves something, she puts her heart and soul into it, her family means so much to her and if anyone threatens that she goes straight to their defence. How I overcame this was doing research. I found out so many things about Wednesday including that her middle name is Friday. 

  • What do you think should be something we truly celebrate about this show?

    Something I think we should truly celebrate about this show is the dedication the cast and crew had to it. We really put our heart and soul into making it come to life. We should celebrate again how the cast was indeed like a family and will still be like a family even though we don’t get to perform as one. 

  • Anything else you would like to add?

    I truly am sorry that the community didn’t get to see this show because they don’t know what they’ve missed out on. This show was probably going to be the best show John Paul College has put on purely because we were The Addams Family before we were told that we were.

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Nicole Navarro

Year 10

Pugsley Addams

 

 

  • Who is your character? Tell us a bit about them.

    I play the role of Pugsley Addams. Pugsley is the mischievous, annoying yet charming little brother of Wednesday Addams. He is a young boy who enjoys being mistreated by his older sister, but once he realises that he may be losing her to her new boyfriend (Lucas Beincke), he takes matters into his own hands to ensure that it will not happen. 

  • What is your favourite quote or lyric from your character?

    My favourite quote from my character would be: “But what if she doesn’t get rid of him? What if all the good times are already behind me?” When Pugsley says this line, in my perspective, it really makes him wonder what his life would be like without Wednesday. He becomes nervous about the whole situation between his big sister and Lucas, and it really shows that even though their bond with each other may be very different from any other set of siblings, the connection that they have between each other is one that he is going to miss.

  • Are there any themes in the show that particularly resonate with you?

    The themes that resonate with me the most are relationships and growing up, but these themes go more towards the side of friendship. Relationships and growing up have become a huge part of my production life, as it has become a time of building and making new friends over the course of many years. 

  • What was your favourite moment of the production process?

    My favourite moment of the production process was when the chorus started to become part of show. Even though they only had a few rehearsals, the amount of effort and energy they had put into it, really made the whole show start coming together. 

  • What are some challenges you faced? How did you overcome these challenges?

    In this year’s production the challenge I faced was performing as a different gender. It was very interesting to be playing this role as it was different from what I usually do. But doing a little bit of research and investigation helped me a lot when creating the role of my character, as it helped me produce the sound of his voice and the way he acts. 

  • What do you think should be something we truly celebrate about this show?

    We should truly celebrate the whole cast. The amount of dedication, time and effort we had all put into this show was incredible. We all worked together as a team to ensure that this was going to be one amazing and unforgettable show, and no doubt, this was going to be one sensational production. 

  • Anything else you would like to add?

    Looking back at how much we achieved throughout that time we were in rehearsals, makes me realise how much love we all have for productions. All the memories and moments that were created during that period are ones that I will cherish forever. We wouldn’t have been able to do this show without all the teachers who supported us and put their amazing efforts into it as well, especially to Mooj, Sando and Fuller, and for that I express one big thank you from the bottom of my heart! I am so grateful that I was able to be part of this cast and production, and having the opportunity to play Pugsley was an honour and an experience that I will never forget. This production will always have a special place in my heart and it will always remind me of the incredible time that I had with my Addams Family. “It’s family first and family last and family by and by.”

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Connor Doyle 

Year 12

Lurch Addams

 

  • Who is your character? Tell us a bit about them.

    My character is Lurch. Lurch is the butler of the family who doesn't talk and doesn't really do anything unless he hears his name and gets told what to do.

  • What is your favourite quote or lyric from your character?

    My favourite quote from Lurch is the groaning.

  • What was your favourite moment of the production process?

    Seeing new leads, meeting new people and working together.

  • What were some challenges you faced? How did you overcome these challenges?

    The challenge for me was singing "Move Toward The Darkness" and how I overcame the challenge was practicing the tones of the song and remembering the lyrics.

  • What do you think should be something we truly celebrate about this show?

    We should celebrate the new leads and students that are doing their first production at JPC and celebrating the Year 12's because it's their final year and their final production and I hope that they will be remembered for their work in previous JPC productions.

  • Anything else you would like to add?

    I played as Vince Fontaine in Grease last year and it was actually my first production at JPC. I'm certainly going miss being in the Ngargee Centre doing shows that are fun to work on because this is my final year at school and I can't wait to see more shows in the Ngargee Centre in more years to come so I can see the new students becoming lead roles and having a fun time with what they're doing with their roles in the future.

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Michael Hernan 

Year 11

Uncle Fester

 

  • Who is your character? Tell us a bit about them.

    My character is the lovable Uncle Fester.

  • What is your favorite quote or lyric from your character?

    My favourite quote from Fester is: “So who is this Lucas fellow? Is he worthy of her love? What is love anyway? Does this rash look serious to you? So many questions about love!”

  • Are there any themes in the show that particularly resonate with you?

    The theme of being weird and being proud of it. I resonate with that theme because my whole family is weird.

  • What was your favourite moment of the production process?

    I don’t know if this one was my favourite, but it was funny. So, after acting out a line where Fester is pretending to be sporty and basically being a lunatic, Sando said “So you know that fester doesn’t know anything about football right? Because there’s no third base in football” and I replied confused “there isn’t?”. Everyone burst into laughter!

  • What are some challenges you faced? How did you overcome these challenges?

    A challenge was to learn and preform the dancing, especially with foot work. What I did to get better was to ask the cast for how to do it correctly and then just practice when I was waiting to be picked up after rehearsal.

  • What do you think should be something we truly celebrate about this show?

    The amount of effort, love and determination that everybody poured into this show.

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Kasey Barratt

Year 12 

Grandma Addams

 

 

  • Who is your character? Tell us a bit about them.

    My character was Grandma. She is definitely a comedic character most of the time she doesn’t really know what is going but is also strangely wise at the same time. She is definitely not your typical sweet, caring grandmother, she is all about tough love. She is beyond the point of caring about what other people think so you could say she is sort of prone to oversharing.

  • What is your favourite quote or lyric from your character?

    It is hard to choose because she has some great ones. I think it would have to be, “I’m 102, I have arthritis and shingles and when I break wind it could start the windmills in an old Dutch painting”. It is definitely a little bit gross, but I certainly found it very funny, and I love that she just doesn’t care about what anyone thinks.

  • Are there any themes in the show that particularly resonate with you?

    The theme of family throughout the show really resonated with me. Especially because it was not about how family love and support each other is was also about how they disagree and get on each other’s nerves, but they change and grow back together again.

  • What was your favourite moment of the production process?

    I think my favourite part of the whole things was the last rehearsal we had. Maybe it’s because looking back on it now it was the last time we got to work on the show and nostalgia and stuff but it was one of those great times when everyone was there all working together to create something we were all really passionate about something we loved. There were also some really funny moments.

  • What are some challenges you faced? How did you overcome these challenges?

    I will admit that as much as I really enjoyed playing this character it was not a character that came naturally to me. It took a lot of experimentation and practice during rehearsal and independently to figure out my character. I looked to others who had previously played the role as inspiration, it was a helpful starting point so that I could develop my own interpretation of the character. 

  • What do you think should be something we truly celebrate about this show?

    The thing we should truly celebrate this show is the amazing cast, the teachers and everyone else who was involved. Everyone brought their uniqueness and passion to this show. It was truly something to see everyone come into their characters and even though the process was cut short it was amazing to see how far everyone had come from the first rehearsal.   

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Nick Sugden

Year 12

Lucas Beineke

 

 

  • Who is your character? Tell us a bit about them.

    I was cast as Lucas Beineke in this year’s show. Lucas is a bit of a country boy, growing up in Ohio with his mum, Alice and his father, Mal. Lucas is around 19-20 years old and has fallen for a girl by the name of Wednesday Addams (uh oh). Lucas is a bit of a submissive character however develops the ability to stand up and speak out when he feels that whatever in front of him is “too crazy”. This new self-confidence is very possibly a trait inherited from his father. Even though Lucas develops this sterner side too him, he is still so full of love for his mother and his soon to be wife, Wednesday, even going so far as to put his life on the line for it!

  • What is your favourite quote or lyric from your character?

    I cant narrow it down so I have two equal ones, the first being the “doo doo doo doo”s in the song One Normal Night. I know it may seem odd but during rehearsals when that specific line would come on, some of the other cast members and I would look at each other and begin to do a silly dance that we came up with. There isn’t much behind it only that I always have a laugh when the cast members and I begin to do our silly dance during that line. The other line I an in love with is “wow that was too dark, even for us” said by Gomez (played by Thom West) after Alice confesses her true feelings towards her husband in front of everyone. As the Addams, you would think that they do not have a limit to how dark they can get, however, this line proves that even they have standards! I just love the fact that the Addams have standards and love that line.

  • Are there any themes in the show that particularly resonate with you?

    The main theme that resonates with me is the theme of togetherness and family. The show is all about embracing your family with open arms no matter how wacky they can be. It’s a beautiful message and I think that it’s important to live up to this message and be there for people when needed.

  • What was your favourite moment of the production process?

    The laughs. When something doesn’t go quite right, it’s funny. Hearing the laughter all around the stage just made me feel like I was where I was meant to be. I loved every silly mistake during the rehearsals.

  • What are some challenges you faced? How did you overcome these challenges?

    I don’t think that there were many challenges personally for me during the show. I’d say the big one was getting comfortable in the romantic lead role for the first time and trying to become a romantic character. Getting through that was just slowly adjusting to my characterisation and trying to perfect my character.

  • What do you think should be something we truly celebrate about this show?

    The time we took to create something, even though we did not perform it. The effort in going through the rehearsals should truly be praised. The cast and crew worked their butts off prior to the cancellation of the show but the effort won’t be forgotten. Everyone involved deserves to have their efforts recognised.

  • Anything else you would like to add?

    I  am super proud of everyone in the Addams family and could not think of a better group of people to be with for a show like this one.

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Madison Stevenson 

Year 11

Alice Beineke

 

 

  • Who is your character? Tell us a bit about them.

    My character is Alice Beineke. Alice is a wife to Mal and a mother to Lucas. She is a mother in every sense of the word and is dedicated to her family. Alice is a cheerful and optimistic person but she’s not very sure of herself and looks to her husband and son for her place. She misses when her husband was fun but doesn’t dare disturb the peace they have now. She’s constantly waiting for her life to get better but feels like she can’t do anything about it. Alice is a complex and wonderful character.

  • What is your favourite quote or lyric from your character?

    My favourite Alice quote is from Act 2 Scene 3: “You want to act like a tool, go sleep in the shed!”. To m,e this is the moment where Alice fully accepts that she doesn’t have to be happy, positive and “the mother” all the time. She’s allowed to be crazy and different and not perfectly happy all the time.  

  • Are there any themes in the show that particularly resonate with you?

    My character as a whole really resonated with me. In the show Alice has a really important arc. She is trying to figure out who she is and where she fits in the world. She has thought for forever that she must be kind and obedient and likeable all the time. Throughout the play she discovers her power as an individual and that she doesn’t have to try to please people all the time and she can put herself first. As an audience you get to see the struggle to find the balance between still being kind and also standing up for yourself. The entire show is about embracing yourself and others just the way you are.

  • What was your favourite moment of the production process?

    I think the first read through was my favourite moment. It was my first ever read through and it was a really fun experience. It was the first glimpse at all the characters and how the show was going to go. Even with one read you could see the characters coming to life through the actors. 

  • What are some challenges you faced? How did you overcome these challenges?

    I think because this was my first show as a lead, I was putting a lot of pressure on myself to get it right. Learning lines was something I was worried about but to my surprise once I got started and really settled into my character it became reasonably easy. I was worried about the poems because if I forget one of those it messes it all up because it has to rhyme. I used other words in the dialogue to trigger my memory and tried to have backup plans in case it didn’t work. My song was also something I was worried about because it had as few big notes and belting was never my forte. I had to work really hard to access that part of my range but now that I have, I love it. My song was one of the things of which I was most proud. 

  • What do you think should be something we truly celebrate about this show?

    Addams Family is a beautiful show because it celebrates people’s differences and what it means to be a family. That is what the Ngargee Centre is all about. This show was perfect for this year. It brought the cast together as a family and we are all such good friends. This has made the troubling events of this year a lot easier. 

  • Anything else you would like to add?

    Just that I’m so grateful for this show and the opportunity to be a part of it. 

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Jodie Siggs

Year 11

Mal Beineke

 

  • Who is your character? Tell us a bit about them.

    My character Mal Beineke. He is sort of the straight man character. He’s there to react to everything and he’s sort of meant to be the “anti-Addams”. Where the Addams are this quirky and dark family, he’s just normal. He’s a little bit conservative. He’s from Ohio. Sort of strange that I was picked to play this character, but I guess it worked out in the end. 

  • Are there any themes in the show that particularly resonate with you?

    I reckon theme of change really because over the course of the musical, the characters are going through a change, particularly the Beinekes. They’re changing for the better. They’re becoming less rigid which is the journey I went through. I was extremely rigid before I was introduced to the Ngargee by my friends, and now here I am. 

  • What was your favourite moment of the production process?

    Seeing it all come together just before it was torn apart haha. That was really cool. But also just being there in the early stages and hanging out with these people and reading through the lines together. Getting to know both the characters and the people behind the characters. 

  • What are some challenges you faced? How did you overcome these challenges?

    I reckon a particular challenge I faced was that I tend to leave things til the last minute, so I was there trying to learn my lines as quickly as possible. When preparing for a production, you just can’t leave everything til the last minute. 

  • What do you think should be something we truly celebrate about this show?

    The fact that it still sort of went ahead. We still got a show and we had some audience as well. This demonstrates perseverance – the Ngargee is “un-killable”.

  • Anything else you would like to add.

    Mostly that I hope I’m involved in next year’s production and hopefully this doesn’t happen again! 

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Staff Reflection

From the second we found this show, we knew that it was the perfect one for our 2020 Ngargee Kids…we just didn’t realise at the time how perfect: the story was perfect, the themes of the show were perfect and our cast of misfit weirdos was absolutely perfect. This perfection continued into the first read-through and the subsequent rehearsals with some of the best characterisation we have seen throughout our time at JPC. Vocally, every student blew us away on a regular basis with some highlights including Connor’s Move Towards the Darkness, Madi’s Waiting and Nicole’s rendition of What If. But without question, our favourite musical moment of this show is when the whole cast unites to sing the opening number, especially those iconic final words ‘it’s family first and family last and family by and by’. 

Between us, Mr. Sanderson-Young, Mr. Fuller and I have approximately 88 years of experience in live theatre. We thought we’d seen it all, we thought we’d dealt with every possible hurdle, every possible drama and every possible challenge the theatre could throw at us. Enter Covid-19. At the risk of sounding totally dramatic (me? Never!), the week that the Corona Virus finally called an end to the production promised to be one of the most challenging weeks of our professional careers: all we could see in our heads were the faces of our Ngargee Family, our cast and our crew. We were terrified of letting them down and we were terrified of the reaction with which we’d be met. We shouldn’t have been. We were met with love, kindness and compassion. In fact, the initial reaction from so many members of the cast was to check on US! This reaction of love and kindness was further shared by the families of our cast and by the staff of JPC. I can’t tell you how grateful we were to receive so many words of love and support from our extended Ngargee family. This allowed us as a group to share the sadness, to help each other through the grief and to figure out a way forward. Nothing was going to keep the Ngargee Family down!

This lead to the very first ‘Iso Read-Through’ of a JPC show ever! Our lead cast and our featured ensemble Zombie Squad gathered online with the staff to read the script in character and sing the sound track at the tops of their voices – in full costume and make-up of course! The evening was choc-a-block full of joy, laugher and regular cries of “oops! My mic wasn’t on!”. Whilst we weren’t on our stage, the Ngargee Spirit was truly with us and we couldn’t help but realise that this thing we call “Ngargee” extends far beyond the walls of a building. 

To our amazing cast and crew: of all of the students we have met throughout our time as a teachers, the pride we have in you is second-to-none. You have demonstrated true leadership in how you have dealt with this news and with your never-ending display of love, kindness and optimism. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for everything. You are the embodiment of what the Ngargee Family is all about.

To our year twelves: you have held yourselves with grace and dignity and you have led with strength, courage and passion as you have throughout your entire time at JPC. Please know that we adore you. We have loved watching you grow into the incredible young adults you are and we will always welcome you back with open arms. You are now, and will always be such central members of the Ngargee Family.

The story of The Addams Family is going to be one for the history books and I, for one, can’t wait to tell future generations of Ngargee Kids all about the cast and crew of 2020 – their resilience, their passion, their love, their optimism and their incredible understanding and support (for each other and for the staff). 

Rumour has it that when you’re an Addams (or a Beineke for that matter), you need to have a little moonlight, that you have to see the world in shades of gray; that you’ve got to have a sense of humour and a lot of passion; that you have a very special duty and you’re obligated to your clan. When you’re an Addams or a Beineke, it’s family first and family last and family by and by. Congratulations to our perfect cast and crew. We are eternally proud of you. You are now and will always be family.

Written by Ms. Jacqui Moore on behalf of Mr. Stewart Sanderson-Young and Mr. Ben Fuller

 

Featured Ensemble List

Sarah Simpson (Chorus Captain), Mikayla Bugeja, Hannah Boyes, Bella Calderwood, Issy Cosma, Grace Craddock-Harris, Xavier Hutchinson , Claudia Lopez, Thomas Moloney, Caitlin Muir, Jae Pusey, Tom Varga & Kirralee White.