Legion Of Fans For Joseph
Posted by News Editor
Posted in News
REVIEW – Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat – The Mayflower, Southampton
If there’s one show sure to have the whole audience humming as they leave the theatre, it’s Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Estimated to have sold a record-breaking 15 million tickets, Bill Kenwright’s production of this classic West End musical is back in Southampton, and with X Factor’s Joe McElderry donning the kaleidoscopic ‘coat of many colours’, fans of the iconic Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice production are not disappointed.
Perhaps it’s because tonight marks the start of the tour’s final week, but there is a distinct sense of excitement in the auditorium as the screen lifts on the full cast and children’s Stagecoach choir. No time for any build-up, the performers immediately hit us with the first of Lloyd Webber’s familiar tunes as they embark on the somewhat nefarious biblical tale of Joseph and his eleven envious brothers.
Joe McElderry embodies the part of Joseph perfectly. It’s clear he has has built up a legion of fans on this tour; he even earns himself a rare mid-scene standing ovation during his striking vocal performance of Close Every Door.
No stranger to a big stage, Lucy Kay, our Narrator, is a graduate of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and in 2014 came runner up on Britain’s Got Talent. Her faultless vocals and infectious smile guide the audience through the story with ease.
The ensemble of brothers are charismatic and brimming with energy, which proves necessary due to the immense amount of dancing involved in this feel-good production.
Joseph – Continues To Thrill Audiences
The cast’s versatility is tested by the array of comedic, albeit random choreographic styles; one minute we’re watching performers dressed in 1950s high-school costumes dancing with ‘the King’ – Emilianos Stamatakis’ Elvis-esque Pharaoh, next we’re clapping along to a dazzling flamenco number. The strange combination of dance and musical styles only add to the humour, and it’s almost certainly one of the reasons Joseph has continued to thrill audiences for several decades.
A set of steps flanks each side of the stage, upon which sits the Joseph choir. The raised staging helps to create a sense of inclusivity throughout the auditorium, and several times I turn around to see people dancing along happily in the circle and balcony seats.
For a family-friendly musical whose soundtrack guarantees to stick in your head for days, it doesn’t get much better than Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat.
Beccy Conway 5th July 2016
Images: Mark Yeoman