Arts, OldVenue

Review: ‘Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat’ at the Norwich Theatre Royal

The colourful show of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat has arrived at the Norwich Theatre Royal, encompassing all the elements that make Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s collaboration such a hit musical.

The audience waited in heightened anticipation for the Biblical world of colour and dreams to unfold while the Orchestra played a long music introduction, creating an exciting atmosphere. In parts, the audience would clap along to the catchy, familiar tunes while the lights would change their many colours, designed by Nick Richings.

Once the bright Egyptian veil was drawn, the impressive scenery and staging was revealed, with great set design innovation by Sean Cavanagh. Throughout the show, the set would change to reflect the exotic lands to where Joseph was taken, and the scenery did very well at keeping up with the changing themes of the songs, from the Paris setting of ‘Those Canaan Days’ to the Caribbean style of ‘Benjamin Calypso’.

Lloyd Daniels debuted as Joseph in his first musical theatre performance. He was a wonderfully likeable and charming Joseph with a great singing voice. Although this marked his first time acting, Daniels put his all into it, presenting an excellent range of character. He particularly came into his own as the authoritative Joseph towards the end when he meets his brothers after so many years in the song ‘Grovel, Grovel’. Daniels in the jail scene also conveyed a particularly emotional and powerful rendition of ‘Close Every Door’.

Danielle Hope was an excellent narrator, carrying the story with her powerful voice and strong acting skills. She made the audience feel involved and engaged with the story while supporting the songs with her wonderful voice.

The breadth and quality of the costumes were fantastic, overseen by wardrobe supervisor, Kieran Kerry. The all special technicolour dreamcoat was exactly as it should be and the finale scene with the coat was very impressive. The number of costume changes the three handmaidens made was mind spinning, their dance technique and theatrical presence also an important part of the show, with Camilla Rowland portraying a formidable and seductive Mrs Potiphar.

The cast was strong and the varying characters of the brothers were presented well by the ten men. Henry Metcalfe worked well as Jacob/Potiphar, his strongest moment being in ‘Those Canaan Days’ and throughout his experience was balanced well against the young talent of Daniels.

Throughout the show the cast had the important background vocals of the Broadland Youth Choir, who all performed tremendously well for their tender ages.

A fantastic moment in the performance, which had all the audience laughing, was Matt Lapinskas as the Pharaoh i.e. the King. His impersonation of Elvis was superb and marked an important moment in the performance, asking the audience to suspend all logical reality, something Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat excels at.

This was a show full of fun and ridiculousness, from a talking camel, inflatable sheep to Joseph riding in at the end on a golden motor bike. It had everyone singing and clapping to ‘Any Dream will do’ at the end, and the standing ovation and cheering at the spectacular finale, reflected what a huge success it was!

02/11/2014

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harrietnorman