Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
Music Andrew Lloyd Webber lyrics Tim Rice
The Wyvern Swindon
Bill Kenwright’s revitalised touring production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is a high-energy colourful retelling of the bible story of Joseph and his brothers.
Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s musical has been inventively developed over the years since its first performance over 40 years ago as a cantata for the Colet Court school in London.
Kenwright directs this effervescent production with imagination and flair and has an exhilarating talented young cast who all give electrifying performances.
Lloyd Daniels (X Factor finalist in 2009) making his musical theatre debut is an excellent Joseph with a rich powerful voice and youthful good looks. His vocal range is impressive especially in the heart-rending ballad “Close Every Door To Me”.
Also making her professional stage debut, Amelia Lily, an X Factor finalist from 2011, plays the role of the Narrator with aplomb. She has a powerful expressive voice and a delightful rapport with the audience.
Matt Lapinskas who played Anthony Moon in East Enders gives a tremendous performance as Pharaoh with a hip grinding rock and roll impersonation of Elvis including a new number “Song of the King”.
The music is infectious with dynamic new arrangements (musical director Tim Whiting) with a range of genres and heavy use of pastiche.
There is a lively version of “One More Angel in Heaven” with the cast as cowboys and after they sing this “tragic tale” the break into a hectic and exhausting Hoedown.
By contrast is a hilarious French cabaret version of “Those Canaan Days,” with the cast singing in faux French accents and wearing Breton jumpers and berets accompanied by one of the brothers playing the accordion. An added bonus is the impressive Apache dance.
The songs switch from Calypso to Gospel singing and big ballad numbers with a well-rehearsed group of youngsters from Stagecoach Swindon providing the backing choir.
The set designed by Sean Cavanagh is spectacular with vibrant inventive lighting (Nick Richings) and is beautifully costumed with inspired slick choreography by Henry Metcalf.
The staging with a moving staircase, pyramids, a speaking sphinx, talking camels and inflatable sheep all adds to the fun.
The final number “Any Dream Will Do” is a true showstopper and this is followed by an exhausting Joseph Megamix that had the capacity Swindon audience dancing in the aisles and singing along.
The hard working cast must have been exhausted by the end of the performance and gave their all and thoroughly deserved every moment of the thunderous applause and standing ovation. Indeed do “Go Go Joseph”.
Reviewer: Robin Strapp