Oak Bay actors round out Addams Family cast

The Addams Family: A New Musical Comedy at the McPherson Playhouse.

Cody Miller of Oak Bay is engaged to Wednesday Addams, of Addams Family fame, but it’s all for show.

Miller and fellow Oak Bay resident Alan Penty play the most normal of abnormal father and son pairings – Lucas and Malcom Benieke respectively – in the Kaleidoscope Theatre’s upcoming performance of The Addams Family.

“It’s got that Romeo and Juliet thing of star-crossed lovers from two different worlds kind of thing,” 18-year-old Miller said. “I’m a clean-cut ‘normal guy’ I come from a normal world and my parents are completely ‘normal.’”

But he loves busting out of his shell for the role that includes a duet called Crazier Than You where the two youth attempt to top each other in the ‘abnormal’.

Penty, who plays the dad who happens to be an accountant, has a little Halloween experience with Kaleidoscope’s Halloween bash. Penty portrayed Frank’n Furter in The Rocky Horror Show in 2010.

“It was a fun role,” said Penty, a longtime drama and English teacher at Vic High.

“If you haven’t experienced one of these Kaleidoscope Halloween nights at McPherson, you’ll love it,” he added. “Everyone dresses up. The costume contest was the most excited costume contest I’ve ever seen in my life.”

This year the spooky and spectacular feature is The Addams Family: A New Musical Comedy at the McPherson Playhouse.

Penty is the ‘normal’ neighbour in the “bizarre and weird and dark” show.

“It’s fun. I get to play the cranky, miserable neighbour. I’m an accountant and very normal and uptight. It’s a fun role,” said Penty, a regular performer with Sin City, the serialized improv and last year played Richard Hannay in 39 Steps at Langham Court Theatre.

“The fun part about it is that initially you think the Addams family must be the dysfunctional ones, but in reality they all support each other. My family comes and they don’t really support each other.”

Miller, a 2013 Spectrum grad who performed with the school but has no other training, is thrilled to work with experienced actors.

“It’s great to work with all the actors with more experience that I’ve been able to feed off,” he said. “All of my training comes from high school. It’s great to intake all of this new stuff with amazing people.”

The all-star cast of 45 of local artists includes Rachel Paxton as Wednesday, the “Legendary” Victoria Drag Queen and philanthropist Gouda Gabor as the 102-year-old “Cougar” Grandma, Emma Cherris-Kelly as Pugsley, Darren Rathgaber as the loveable Uncle Fester, and Brandon Challen as Lurch. Oak Bay’s Chloe Johnson will also appear in the show as an Addams ancestor. Johnson graduated from the Canadian College of Performing Arts in April and this is her first show with Kaleidoscope.

“Alan (Penty) is one of the most supportive people, one of the top people I’ve learned from through this process,” Miller said. “It’s very inspirational to know that I have a friendship, not only on stage, but in person. It’s a lot of weight off your shoulders to know you’re having a good time with people you like off stage.”

Kaleidoscope’s Roderick Glanville is Gomez and Victoria songbird Francesca Bitonti plays Morticia in the show directed by Pat Rundell with choreography by Tara Britt and musical direction by Yanik Giroux.

“I love the music in the show,” Penty said. “A lot of the cast are saying how the music stays with us. We’re all going home humming the music.

Revisiting the Addams family is a blast, Penty added. And it helps that it is a very funny show, with many favourite moments.

“I’m hoping I get to rip off my shirt and there’s a Grateful Dead T-shirt underneath,” he said with a chuckle. “I love it when (the audience is) really with us and I think they really will be. I sing a number I’m Crazier than You and I think the audience will get into the music and the being whacky. There’s all kinds of whacky stuff that still amuses me.”

The company hopes to raise $50,000 for Kaleidoscope Theatre’s programming at the 18th annual benefit production at McPherson Playhouse, #3 Centennial Square, on Oct. 31 and Nov. 1 at 8 p.m. and Nov. 2 at 2 p.m.

Tickets start at $25 and are available through McPherson box office at 250-386-6121 or rmts.bc.ca.

 

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