Sara Gettelfinger is touring America as the original queen of goth glamour: Morticia Addams. Currently, she’s haunting the 5th Avenue Theatre through Nov. 11.
The new musical tells a completely new story about America’s favorite spooky family. In this version of The Addams Family, Morticia spends much of her time trying to pry the truth out of her grown-up daughter, Wednesday, and her ever passionate husband Gomez.
With Halloween just around the corner, Gettelfinger revealed what it was like to slither into that black dress and take on Morticia’s kooky family life.
Can you tell us a little about how you were cast as Morticia?
I had worked with our amazing director Jerry Zaks on another production called 101 Dalmatians and one day his office called and said he would like to set up a meeting to discuss the possibility of playing Morticia. They sent me to see the show, I met with Jerry, the producers and other members of the creative team later that week, and at the end of our meeting they asked me to play the role. I was beyond thrilled!
As spooky as the Addams Family appears to be, they’re actually quite sweet, especially to each other … and then there’s the great romance of Morticia and Gomez. Why do you think she fell for him?
I believe Morticia fell in love with Gomez because of his incredible and fearless passion for life – in his music, in his laughter, in the way he so fiercely loves his family. He’s a man who celebrates who he is and what he loves even if it seems unconventional to others. That kind of joy, that kind of confidence, absolutely makes Gomez irresistible to her… and their passionate tangos every week don’t hurt either, wink wink!
What do you think is the secret to Morticia’s undying appeal for Gomez … and the audience?
Morticia’s appeal comes from the fact that she is a sexy, smart and confident woman who marches to her own drum regardless of what anyone else thinks. At the same time her ultimate goal is to be a wonderful wife and a loving mother and run a successful, happy household, and that makes her very relatable.
Since you’ve played Cruella De Vil, you’re used to outrageous hair and costumes. Which is the harder persona to play on stage: Morticia or Cruella?
Physically, Cruella De Vil was much more difficult – I spent the entire show on stilts! But overall, Morticia has been the greater challenge. At this point in my life, I have not experienced what it is like to be married let alone married for 25 years. And I also have not experienced being a mother and raising children into their 20s. For me, those are the areas where I find it most important to find authenticity as an actor.
So what would Morticia wear to go trick-or-treating with the kids?
She would definitely be borrowing Lady Gaga’s famous meat dress!
The Addams Family plays through Nov. 11 at the 5th Avenue Theatre. For more information, check the theater’s website.