City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Edinburgh Playhouse, Review


By Gordon Clayton - Posted on 17 November 2010

5
Keith Jack is 'Joseph'
Show Details
Company: 
Bill Kenwright presents by special arrangement with the Really Useful Group
Production: 
Bill Kenwright (director), Henry Metcalf (choreographer), David Steadman (Production Musical Director)
Performers: 
Keith Jack (Joseph),Trina Hill (Narrator), Lachlan Schevber (Pharaoh)
Running time: 
120mins

All good things come to he who waits and Keith Jack, having previously toured the country as the Narrator, has taken the lead role and the famous costume at long last. After four months on the road, Keith Jack finally got to show a home audience what they always knew: that he has the voice and stage presence to wear the coat with pride.

This Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice production has developed and grown over a period of nearly 50 years. Anyone who saw the early versions might be hard pressed to recognise this version. From its early beginnings as a 15 minute contribution to a school entertainment it has expanded into a full blown West End Show.

Joseph takes the biblical story of Jacob’s favourite son, who is sold into slavery by his brothers, but who, through his ability to analyse dreams, rises to lead Egypt through years of plenty and famine and into potential power over his errant brothers. That’s the bones of the plot and it’s hard to fathom why it visits other countries and cultures and has ‘Elvis’ as a main character in the Pharoah role.

However, the result is pure entertainment. This might be a touring company, but the standard all round is first class.

Trina Hill is excellent as the Narrator, never intrusive but she has a great voice and moves around the players really well. The ensemble of brothers produces a powerful sound and the dance routines are really slick.

Lachlan Schevber was impressive as the Pharaoh and no one tired of him singing ‘for one more time.’

The sets are good, lighting imaginative, but hats off to the sound engineer for the overall sound quality, balancing orchestra and vocals perfectly.

While Keith Jack may not have the physical presence of some of his predecessors, he acts, moves, and clowns with aplomb.

His distinctive voice, which ranges from whisper to crescendo, must surely make him the best singer to have played the role. To use phrases that his local supporters will readily recognise Keith ‘gies it laldy’ and will be standing tall at the Playhouse until Sunday.

Joseph runs to 21 November.

Show times are:

Sunday Tues-Thurs 7.30pm
Wed, Thurs matinees 1.30pm
Fri 5pm and 8pm
Sat 2pm, 5pm & 8pm Sun 1pm & 4pm

Tickets (book tickets)
£15.25-
£27.50 (£12-£24)