NEPA Scene Staff

Young cast of ‘Addams Family’ musical haunts Act Out Theatre in Dunmore Oct. 19-28

Young cast of ‘Addams Family’ musical haunts Act Out Theatre in Dunmore Oct. 19-28
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From a press release:

Act Out Theatre Group will present “The Addams Family” in the company’s new home in Dunmore from Friday, Oct. 19 through Sunday, Oct. 28. Artistic Director Dan Pittman of Plymouth leads this cast of workshop participants ages 13-18 through a musical comedy that is sure to have audiences laughing.

“’The Addams Family’ is a great musical to present this fall with Halloween right around the corner,” said Pittman. “It will have you laughing and crying the entire time and is definitely a show the whole family can enjoy.”

Gomez Addams, the patriarch of the Addams Family portrayed by Jordan Mailler of Scranton and Brennen Johnson of Hanover Twp., faces a dilemma when he’s caught between his wife, Morticia, played by Celia Condon of Scranton and Molly Butler of Dunmore, and his daughter, Wednesday (Kaitlyn Dolphin, Scranton, and Paige Martin, Dunmore). Hilarity ensues when Wednesday’s brother, Pugsley (Caelan Baden, Taylor, and Emily Carey, Dunmore), tries to poison his sister and make her her normal self again.

“My favorite character in ‘Addams Family’ is by far Gomez,” Johnson said. “Gomez reminds me of myself in a lot of ways. We are both very quick with a joke, clever with words and, most importantly, we both want to try and please everyone; however, that’s just not possible.”

The cast also includes Grandma Addams (Lily Smith, Peckville, and Elizabeth Brace, Dunmore), Alice Beineke (Alana Simrell, Scranton, and Leslie O’Connor, Archbald), Uncle Fester (Max Snyder, Scranton, and Emily Stedina, Dunmore), Lurch (Karl Barbee, Scranton), and the ancestors (Marina Rinkunas, Dunmore; Allie Katz, Clarks Summit; Nora Simrell, Scranton; Megan Brace, Dunmore; Milana Snyder, Scranton; and Olivia Anderson, Dallas). There are three sets of siblings in the cast, and two girls are playing gender-swapped roles.

Johnson and Mailler alternate roles and also portray Mal Beineke. Playing two roles can be difficult, but both teenagers have risen to the occasion.

“The biggest challenge [of playing both Gomez and Mal] is probably portraying such different forms of love, accents, and overall personalities,” Mailler said. “Sure, they are both loving fathers and husbands, but they have many more details that show the differences between them.”

​Molly Butler and Brennen Johnson as Morticia and Gomez Addams

Act Out Theatre Group recently relocated to Dunmore and has produced a few shows there since June.

“Our original location in Taylor, Pennsylvania was sold in April,” Pittman said. “We were lucky enough to find our current location in Dunmore fairly quickly. The people at Socafe, the owners of the building, have been extremely supportive in our transition.”

Mailler said the theatre provides him – and others – with a second home of sorts.

“Around here, there aren’t many things to do, but there will always be Act Out Theatre,” he said. “[We] continuously put on amazing shows that definitely should not be missed. You have no idea what you are actually missing until you see or are involved with this family.”

Molly Butler alternates with Celia Condon as Morticia Addams.

“I think it’s beneficial to play a leading role and an ensemble role because it really helps to make you a more well-rounded performer,” Butler said. “Sure, everyone wants to play a leading role, but ensemble is equally as important and teaches people wonderful teamwork skills. Plus, it’s so wonderful being able to share a role with someone because you both get to learn from each other.”

“People should come and see the show for many reasons,” Johnson said. “The most important reason is that this show displays messages of how growing up is inevitable and that sometimes we all have to let go.”

“[‘The Addams Family’] is so enjoyable. The music is great, the script is so funny, and it really provides a nostalgia that you don’t want to miss out on,” Butler said.

“The Addams Family” runs at the Act Out Theatre (150 E. Grove St., Dunmore) from Oct. 19-28 at 7:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and at 3 p.m. on Sundays.

Tickets, which are $20 for adults and $15 for students/seniors, can be purchased by e-mailing Tickets can also be purchased at the door. Pre-payment is not required. Reservations are recommended but also not required.

​Alana Simrell as Alice Beineke