Audience members expecting the traditional production of "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" when the curtain goes up nightly at Drury Lane Theatre are in for a surprise.
But, it's a pleasant surprise. The new rendition of "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" at Oakbrook's Drury Lane features the same rousing Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice score but all the other theatrical components are definitely different.
"Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" continues through March 25" at Drury Lane Theatre. The musical is directed by Alan Souza with choreography by Grady McLeod Bowman.
The show tells the Genesis story of "dreamer" Joseph and his brothers, who sell their father's favorite son into slavery. It's a tale that speaks of not only dreams but courage, loyalty and learning to treat people right.
Starring in this production are Evan Alexander Smith as Joseph with Christina Bianco stepping into the role of the Narrator. This "Joseph" production definitely belongs to Bianco, a singer/actress and celebrity impressionist known for making a name for herself on YouTube. In the roles of Jacob/Potiphar and Pharoah is Colte Julian.
This production, according to director Souza, has its roots in the Biblical story but features a number of twists and turns, including having a Las Vegas setting. The Vegas setting surely has its sleazy side, which many people can definitely do without, but it also allows for some creative and comic angles.
And the most creative and surprising aspect of this "Joseph" is Bianco. The actress uses her talents as an impressionist/impersonator extremely well in this show. Her musical narration is done in assorted voices and characters as she belts out the Webber tunes as everyone from Cher and Britney Spears to Celine Dion.
This writer, who has been an avid fan of Webber's "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" production through the years, namely the hit rendition starring Donny Osmond in the '90s, offers kudos to director Souza for this interpretation. While this production is far removed from the original show, and surely has its naysayers, it offers a witty, humorous, and at times, fascinating take on the popular Webber production.