Mo’ Money, Mo’ Musical

Written by Max Hurtubise and Simon Hua|

The Morgan Musical has been a tradition since 1965. This year, the Friends of Morgan Music are putting on The Addams Familywritten by Andrew Lippa, Marshall Brickman, and Rick Elice. The musical, which originated as a comic strip by Charles Addams, then became a television show, and eventually turned into a series of movies, is about how the family members of the fictional Addams family react to their daughter, Wednesday, after she tells them of her plan to marry a boy whose ordinary character does not fit with the eccentric nature of the family.

To dispel some commonly held misconceptions about the effort that goes into each production, some cast members have more to share about the process. Senior Matt Fordwho will star as Gomezsays, “It may seem like just a frolic in the field, but it’s actually a lot of work.” He explains, “We do it because we like it, and we put our hard work and our souls into it.”  

Cast members (left to right): Katelyn Sordo, Emma Lindsay, Jenna Kareliussen, Rachel Schmardel, Ryan Baker, Kiara Suarez, Dylan Ayer, Sarah Gaetano, Aiden Maurais, Phoebe Sullivan

But hard work and soul all too often are not enough. Putting on a production of this scale involves a lot of money. Cast members are required to raise a minimum of $150 from patrons alone. On top of that, every cast member is also required to talk to businesses and sell ad space in the playbill so that they can be featured and hopefully attract customers. These ads can be sold as business listings for $50, or they can take up more space, which is more expensive. A full-page ad costs the most at $175.

These fundraisers may seem like they all add up to pay for everything, but in reality, they do not. The Morgan School allocates no significant funding to the musical. Often, Director and Music Teacher John Lampe ends up having to contribute a sum of his own money toward the musical. Students who take part in the musicals often become frustrated about how it is self-funded. Junior Emma Blairwho will star as Grandmacontends, “We never have enough money.”

Rehearsals for the musical are separated into two groups. There are full-cast rehearsals, which take place twice a week, whereas principal roles have separate rehearsals one to two additional times per week. Some of them choose to practice for extended periods outside of Morgan. Junior Katelyn Sordowho will star as Morticiaestimates that she spends 13 hours rehearsing per week, some of which are spent at home memorizing lines and with other people. Clearly, the Morgan Musical is not just an extracurricular activity, but also a full-time job.

Morgan’s production of The Addams Family will premiere on March 28th, 2019. Tickets will go on sale for $15 to the general public on March 6th, but cast members will be able to order tickets starting February 27th. If you want to order your tickets sooner, talk to one of them. Be sure to come and see how their hard work will pay off!

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