The thing I love about musical theatre the most is that it transports you away from normality into a world where people express their feelings through song and dance. For the few hours I spend watching a musical I forget about everything else, and it is a real feel good factor. Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat in particular feels just like a hug, and it makes me really happy. I mean, what is not to love about an amazing multicoloured coat and lights that change colour to match the mood?!
Joseph was one of the first musicals I ever saw, and it is still firmly in my top 5. Watching the show is like catching up with old friends, and I can sing along to all the songs (apologies to all who sit near me as I am definitely not blessed with a voice even remotely close to an angel!)
The show is on at the Bristol Hippodrome at the moment, staring a Joseph in the title role. Remember Joe McElderry who won The X Factor in 2009? Well he certainly had a lot of fans in the audience, as he received the biggest cheer when he walked out on stage for the opening number! Joe has a really sweet face and voice, something that is fitting to play Joseph. Joseph is someone the audience really likes, and are rooting for to succeed. Joe has the nice guy act down to a fine art, and his lovely smile won over the audience alone! He looked like he was enjoying every moment of the show, which is important for the leading actor.
Joseph is a different type of musical, as it is one of the few that is purely full of songs, and no dialogue. Everything is sung. The musical follows the story of Joseph, the youngest (and favourite) son of Jacob. His 11 brothers (big family!), get a touch of the green eyed monster, and so sell Joseph as as slave and tell their father that he has died. We follow Joseph’s rise from slave to Egyptian hero. The story is narrated through song by a narrator, and in this case that was Lucy Kay. The narrator is an important part, and they are rarely off the stage. Their job is to pull the audience in, and keep them feeling part of the story. I think that Lucy did a great job. She had a really clear and confident voice, and kept the story flowing.
And finally I couldn’t finish this review without a mention of the rocking Elvis Pharaoh, played by Ben James-Ellis. This is a role for someone to really have fun with, and Ben certainly did that. The song Pharaoh’s Story, where he tells Joseph about his dream,received the biggest cheer of the night. And so did Ben’s energetic dance moves!
So if you are looking for a musical that is full of colour, catchy songs, and laughs Joseph is the one for you! Now…..where can I find myself a multicoloured coat?!