Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat by Dock Mennonite Academy in Souderton, PA
November 14, 2017
Review submitted by PJ Williams of Ridley High School
With a talented cast, impressive technical features and a beautifully written story, audience members should “Go, Go, Go …” to see Dock Mennonite Academy’s Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat!
Written by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is a musical retelling of the biblical stories of Joseph and contains stories from the Book of Genesis. The production professionally premiered in 1970 and, due to its acclaim, has since become one of the most widely produced musicals for high schools and amateur theatres.
Senior Alex Martin led the production portraying the title role of Joseph. Martin’s strong vocal abilities and great commanding stage presence allowed him to truly support the stories being told and carry the production with ease in the audience member’s eyes. Martin’s powerful rendition of “Close Every Door” at the end of Act One left the audience in awe and thinking about it well into the intermission.
Contributing to the performance were the three narrators. The talented female narrating trio was made up of Carlie Coco, Alexa Kennel and Hannah Landis. All three were very entertaining to watch and seemed to never have a dull moment onstage. Their beautiful vocals seamlessly narrated audience members from scene to scene, making the production easy to follow and very fun to watch.
Supporting the production with his portrayal of the Pharaoh was senior Levi Longacre. While not appearing as the Pharaoh until the second act, Longacre took every moment he had onstage and still gave an unforgettable performance, truly channeling the King of Rock and Roll. While singing and dancing, Longacre also impressively managed to play the electric guitar onstage for his entire song, something that can not be an easy task for anyone.
Dock Mennonite Academy’s talent did not stop at the stage, the show’s technical aspects were almost all student done as well! The production’s lighting, designed and executed by Sydney Cardy, truly enhanced the performance and really helped set the mood of certain scenes. Cardy also took on the daunting task of lighting the stage in each color of Joseph’s technicolor dreamcoat, a task that may have taken a lot of work, but truly paid off. Adding to the beautiful, vibrant lights was Jackson Bell’s sound design. Although sometimes a little too quiet to hear over the orchestra, Bell did a great job of making sure everyone onstage could often be heard.
Overall, Dock Mennonite Academy’s Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat was very entertaining to watch and a must-see production for all.
Review submitted by Hannah Oh of Delaware County Christian School
Visit the multicolored world of Dock Mennonite Academy and their performance of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, a colorful retelling of the biblical story of Joseph (Alex Martin) and his journey through trials, family struggles and ultimately learning what it means to forgive. From a Jamaican calypso to a 60’s-themed groove to a country-western number with choreography to match, the cast took the audience on a journey of stories about Joseph’s life: his trials with his eleven jealous older brothers and a father (Seth Kolb), who couldn’t help but pick favorites, to his journey ascending from slavery to the right hand of an Elvis-impersonating, Vegas-esque Pharaoh (Levi Longacre). Guided by an ensemble of three narrators created by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice, (Carlie Cocco, Alexa Kennel and Hannah Landis), the music-only show was a creative hit filled with bright lights and talent to match.
Alex Martin as Joseph was naturally a standout in the cast, effortlessly carrying songs of large difficulty and caliber such as “Close Every Door” with stage presence, a strong high tenor range and bits and pieces of necessary comedic relief. Well-suited for the role, he interacted seamlessly with the ensemble and his on-stage brothers.
The Narrators tied together the show as a unified group, guiding the storyline with difficult soprano notes and lyrics. While each member of the Narrator group contributed strongly to the tone, pitch and harmonies, Carlie Cocco was a standout member the group. The brothers were a similarly strong ensemble, dancing in synchronization and easily adapting to acting as less than the twelve standard men of the group – as they say, the show must go on. Other standout performances included Pharaoh (Levi Longacre) for his delightful moment of comedic relief with “Song of The King” and Mrs. Potiphar’s (Olivia Messina) brief but memorable dance number, “Potiphar.”
The ensemble wore many hats as they transitioned from a large group number with 1960’s vibes to the rock-and-roll of Pharaoh’s song to a number reminiscent of the 1920s with “Potiphar.” While there were a few moments where the energy dipped, the ensemble managed to pull together each and every number with a strong finish.
The lighting crew of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat took advantage of the lyrics in “Jacob & Sons / Joseph’s Coat” listing off colors of “scarlet and black and ochre and peach and ruby and olive and violet and fawn” and displayed lights of each color, quickly transitioning from one to the next. Much to the audience’s delight, the hues added another dimension to a show that transported its viewers into the toe-tapping, colorful world of Dock Mennonite Academy’s performance of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.