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“Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” plays through Dec. 23 at the Arvada Center, 6901 Wadsworth Blvd. Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays. Matinees are 1 p.m. Wednesdays, 2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets: arvadacenter.org/joseph-and-the-amazong-technicolor-dreamcoat-2, 720-898-7200.
Narrator Sarah Rex walks onto the Arvada Center stage from the audience as the pit orchestra plays the lively prologue to “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” and begins to tell the long-ago Biblical story of Jacob and his 11 sons, including his favorite, Joseph (Aaron Young), who soon appears in the splendid coat of many colors received from his father.
Joseph sings of his dreams and swirls in his beautiful coat, while jealous brothers plot. The siblings squabbled, were jealous and eventually sold Joseph to slave traders who take him to Egypt, where he ends up in jail.
Music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and lyrics by Tim Rice hold a special charm in this musical as numbers vary from country (“One more Angel in Heaven”) to Elvis, the pharoah, and a wonderful Calypso number in the second act. Silver-voiced Stephen Day plays both Jacob and Potiphar, and Bobby List shines as the Elvis-like pharoah in a great production number.
Joseph wins favor with the Potiphar by interpreting his dreams and moves from prisoner to a person of note at the court, where he eventually reconciles with his brothers and all ends well, as one would expect in this charming musical flight of fancy.
(Note to parents: We especially enjoyed watching a couple of boys out for a night at the theater with their parents—they loved it and were so delighted throughout. What a fine introduction to big-scale, colorful, high-spirited performances.)
The set works well for assorted scenes. Beautifully costumed cast members were uniformly strong singers and dancers and the finale, which revisits various distinctive scenes, leaves the audience practically dancing out.
The opening of Arvada Center’s rousing rendition of “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” on Nov. 17 was dedicated to a local favorite singer/performer, Daniel Langhoff, who appeared many times on Arvada’s stage (most recently in “Man of La Mancha”) and elsewhere around the active theatre community at Town Hall, Lakewood Cultural Center with Performance Now, and more. He died on Nov. 12. He withdrew from rehearsing for Arvada’s “Jesus Christ Superstar” when cancer returned and lived to see the birth of his second daughter, Naomi. The Denver Actor’s Fund has supported the family and is still accepting gifts for Langhoff’s wife, Rebecca Joseph, and his daughters. Visit DenverActorsFund.org.
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