“Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” takes the Biblical story from Genesis and brings it to life in a happy-go-lucky way. Joseph is the favored son of Jacob. His eleven brothers are unhappy that he gets all the attention so they decide to get rid of him. A narrator brings us on Joseph’s journey where we meet the Pharaoh and many other interesting characters along the way. It is a show my family and I grew up seeing multiple times. We also performed in community theater productions of “Joseph” so it holds a dear spot in my heart. You just can’t leave the theater without a big smile on your face, I know I didn’t.
Joseph, played by Jared Oxborough, was good at portraying an innocent, oblivious and dumbfounded boy. Jodi Carmeli as the narrator (one of my favorite roles of all time) had an interesting vocal mix. Sometimes she sang “pretty” where other times she belted in a rousing gospel style. The ensemble did a fabulous job blending together. Everyone seemed so joyous and their faces lit up like Christmas morning throughout the show. It is always a good thing to see actors in character and enjoying what they are doing. The brothers really worked well as a unit. Mark King’s solo “One More Angel in Heaven” was very entertaining. He did a great job with the hoedown country song and it was fun when the rest of the cast joined in for the big dance number. Pharaoh, played by Keith Rice, did a good impersonation of Elvis and got the audience chuckling. Some smaller but notable roles include the prison scene were the Baker (Dan Beckmann) and Butler (Michael Gruber) did a nice job explaining their dreams to Joseph. Also, Maureen Sherman-Mendez was my favorite wife to watch. Her facial expressions and movements were top notch.
The set was colorful, bright and lively with costumes to match. They took the colors of Joseph’s coat and dashed them on each character. “It was red, yellow, green, brown, scarlet, black…” All the costumes were adorable, especially the women’s ensemble pieces. There were moving letters that spelled out “Joseph” which aslo doubled as props. For example: one of the letters was turned into a camel and a character (Potiphar) squeezed through the “O” during his entrance. It was a clever functioning use of items.
“Joseph” is a quick flowing show with a run time clocking in right around two hours, including intermission. It is a great family friendly musical. Lucky for you, the show just opened and is playing now through August 31st. Go see it! You can find out more here: http://www.chanhassentheatres.com/