VAPA presents ‘The Addams Family


For a theater performance, tens and hundreds of people gather in one place for a couple of hours to enjoy a beautiful, emotional, funny or provoking story. But that, like everything else, changed because of COVID-19.

It was a feat for the theater department to complete and perform the production of “The Addams Family” during such difficult times. But the cast and crew were still able to rehearse and complete the necessary foundations for a successful performance.

To be safe and avoid the challenges of COVID-19, tornadoes and hurricanes, it took a rehearsal schedule that was four months long instead of the usual two.

“It was challenging to produce, rehearse, and present ‘The Addams Family” this year,” Director Mark Clark said. “But the faculty, the production team and students were determined this time to get the musical out there to our academic and regional community.”

Performing the musical was especially challenging because singing spreads the virus faster than just talking. But the team was determined not to give up. It’s been two years since they performed a musical, “Phantom of the Opera,” in 2019 to sold out audiences.

The actors wore masks during their performance but had microphones. Art professor Megan Smith drew character faces on every surgical mask worn by the cast.

A couple of cast members were exposed to COVID-19 and quarantined during the process. The team voluntarily vaccinated when it became available.

“We thought that if we performed in the end of the semester instead our usual schedule, we would also face eased up conditions for safety, and to a small degree, that was true,” Clark said.

More than 100 audience members were able to be seated for each performance, giving the cast live reactions. The show was also broadcasted and there were viewers in the U.K. and Germany.

“‘The Addams Family’ was extremely well received,” Clark said. “But next time we hope to have more students attend live performances.”