Touring – reviewed at Edinburgh Playhouse
Guest reviewer: Sarah Moyes
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat proves it’s still at the top of its game as it returns to the Playhouse – again – over 50 years since it first launched.
The much-loved musical from Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice retells the Biblical story of Jacobs’s favourite son, Joseph, who is transported to Egypt after being sold into slavery by his envious brothers. While there, his life takes a turn for the worse as he ends up being thrown into jail before managing to rebuild his life as a dream interpreter for the Pharaoh.
In this latest production of the show, it’s Jaymi Hensley (from boyband Union J) who gets to wear the famous coat of many colours in his first major musical role. He follows in the footsteps of a number of former X Factor stars who have appeared in this show over the years. And while he might not have a huge wealth of theatre experience on his CV he might just be one of the best Josephs there has been.
Given that the show is told almost completely through song with very few lines of dialogue, the vocal performances need to be on point. Trina Hill has an excellent voice and gives a warm and engaging performance in the role of the Narrator as she helps the audience follow the story.
While you would expect Hensley to have a good voice given his background, he completely blows the audience away with his vocal range which shines through on his emotionally raw performance of ‘Close Every Door To Me’, leaving the audience so captivated you could hear a pin drop.
The song list for Joseph includes an abundance of musical styles – from the country and western twang of ‘One More Angel in Heaven’ to the calypso of ‘Benjamin Calypso’. There is also a very Elvis Presley inspired performance from Andrew Geater as Pharaoh on numbers such as the rock‘n’roll ‘Song of the King’.
Of course, it wouldn’t be Joseph without a supporting cast of young children who provide the backing vocals for some of the show’s most well-known songs.
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This new Bill Kenwright production of the show feels really slick with more up-to-date choreography from Gary Lloyd which really allows Joseph’s brothers to show off their dancing skills.
In a sea of new musicals that continue to pop up, Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat continues to entertain with one hit song after another. As the show comes to a close with the Joseph Megamix, it is clear why such a hugely fun and enjoyable musical still charms the audience to their feet time and time again.
Running time – 2 hours 15 minutes (including one interval)
Edinburgh Playhouse 18 – 22 Greenside Place, EH1 3AA.
Tuesday 19 – Saturday 23 March 2019
Evenings Tue – Thurs: 7.30pm; Fri/Sat: 5pm & 8pm. Matinees Wed/Thurs: 2.30pm; Sat: 2pm.
Tickets and details: Book Here.
Joseph on tour 2019:
19 – 23 Mar
0844 871 3014
26 – 30 Mar
01745 33 00 00
2 – 6 Apr
08448 11 21 21
9 – 13 Apr
Milton Keynes Theatre
0844 871 7652
16 – 20 Apr
01244 409 113
14 – 18 May
Wales Millennium Centre
029 2063 6464
21 – 25 May
28 May – 01 Jun
0844 856 1111
4 – 15 Jun
0844 848 2700
18 – 22 Jun
01332 59 39 39
25 – 29 Jun
2 – 13 July
0844 338 5000
16 – 20 July
0844 871 3020
Jaymi Hensley and company. Pic: Pamela Raith Photography