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Joseph Harrison

Joseph Harrison

Joseph Harrison has been involved with the theatre in some form or fashion all his life. He holds a Journalism degree from the University of Georgia, but his true love is the theatre which he has been involved in as a spectator as well as an actor for the last 30+ years. He has performed in a variety of musicals over the years including FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, PIPPIN, CITY OF ANGELS, 1776, LITTLE WOMEN, WORKING, GODSPELL (Jesus) and JOSEPH..DREAMCOAT (Joseph) just to name a few. Joseph joined the Broadway World family in 2009 as the very first local editor for BWW Atlanta. He served as Senior BWW Editor for Connecticut from 2014 - 2020 and now resides in Orlando, FL and writes for BWW Orlando.


Review: WHITE CHRISTMAS at Titusville Playhouse
November 21, 2022

What did our critic think of WHITE CHThe holidays are about traditions - that special dish on the table, the favorite decoration that was handmade by your child, or a familiar song playing on the radio. And for many, nothing says tradition like watching a classic holiday film. Even though we take comfort in watching these familiar stories play out in the expected way on the small screen, for me, one of the special thrills of seeing a lot of live theater is getting to witness a timeless classic brought to vivid life on the stage. Such is the case for WHITE CHRISTMAS, the latest offering from Titusville Playhouse in Titusville, FL – a thrilling, heartwarming and thoroughly entertaining musical for everyone – young and old alike.RISTMAS at Titusville Playhouse?

Review: THE WORLD GOES ROUND by New Generation Theatrical
October 9, 2022

“Somebody loses, and somebody wins, and one day it’s kicks, then it’s kicks in the shins. But the planet spins. And the world goes ‘round and ‘round.” So goes the title song of the musical revue THE WORLD GOES ROUND – capturing the essence of life, love, loss and everything in between – and setting the stage for a journey through the iconic catalog of musical theatre legends John Kander and Fred Ebb (CABARET, CHICAGO, ZORBA). And in its latest offering of this rare gem of a revue, New Generation Theatrical delivers a stylish, sophisticated and thoroughly satisfying production – giving audiences a simple but thrilling musical with something for everyone.

Review: SH-BOOM! LIFE COULD BE A DREAM at The Winter Park Playhouse
September 25, 2022

The Winter Park Playhouse, in Winter Park, FL is extremely good at producing intimate, sometimes lesser-known, but always high-quality musicals. In my short time here in Orlando, I have had the pleasure of visiting the Playhouse on a few occasions, and each time have been thrilled at my experience – not just because the shows themselves were outstanding, but because the environment radiates warmth, positivity and a true love of the craft of musical theatre. So, it was once again my pleasure to make it out this weekend to see the latest production of The Winter Park Playhouse’s 20th anniversary season – SH-BOOM! LIFE COULD BE A DREAM, and once again I came away with a huge smile and a heartwarming feeling. This latest production is everything audiences have come to expect: a fun and entertaining night of musical theatre, presented by a highly talented cast and imagined by a strong creative team.

Review: YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN at Osceola Arts
September 20, 2022

There’s no arguing that musicals made from movies can be hit or miss. Broadway has had it’s share of them over the last few decades. Sometimes they work well (e.g., HAIRSPRAY, LEGALLY BLONDE, THE PRODUCERS) and sometimes not so much (e.g., CARRIE, KING KONG, DRACULA) but there is something particularly thrilling about seeing a fan favorite brought to life on stage. That is certainly the case for YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN, the musical version of the 1974 Mel Brooks comedy film of the same name. And lucky for fans (of either the film or the musical) the current production at Osceola Arts in Kissimmee is absolutely fabulous – from the first bolt of lighting to the last thunderclap (and audience clap) – it’s a non-stop, rollicking good time.

Review: AIN'T MISBEHAVIN' at Titusville Playhouse
September 17, 2022

Thomas “Fats” Waller, a pioneer in jazz piano, was a prolific composer, writing over 400 songs in his lifetime, with hits like “Ain’t Misbehavin’” and “Honeysuckle Rose” even making it into the Grammy Hall of Fame. So, it is no surprise that in 1978 a Broadway Musical, AIN’T MISBEHAVIN’ premiered featuring dozens of Waller’s songs and a cast of five African American actors, including a young Andre de Shields (HADESTOWN) and the late, great Nell Carter who won a Tony Award for her performance. Since its premiere, AIN’T MISBEHAVIN’ has lived on, thrilling audiences all around the world including the latest production at the Titusville Playhouse in Titusville, FL – an energetic and electric production that sizzles from beginning to end.

Review: NOISES OFF at Orlando Shakes
September 11, 2022

What’s the formula for a perfect farce? First take a bunch of unwitting characters thrown together in an unlikely scenario, add to that a lot of slamming doors, physical comedy and costume malfunctions (and maybe a bunch of sardines) and let boil over until you have immense amounts of laughter. Or you could just study Michael Frayn’s masterpiece of a comedy NOISES OFF, which is currently playing at Orlando Shakes as the opening production of their 2022 – 2023 season.

Review: THE SPONGEBOB MUSICAL at Titusville Playhouse
August 14, 2022

Audiences in Titusville have their own chance to journey to Bikini Bottom and visit SpongeBob and friends in Titusville Playhouse’s 58th season opener – THE SPONGEBOB MUSICAL – a visual feast of a show featuring an outstanding cast which delivers a fun, family-friendly, and highly entertaining night at the theatre.

Review: SWEENEY TODD by New Generation Theatrical
July 9, 2022

How do you take a brilliant piece of classic musical theatre and improve upon it? Orlando’s New Generation Theatrical's production of SWEENEY TODD, does this by breaking down the typical stage barriers and immersing the audience in the material, creating a fresh (and fantastic) production.

Review: SCHOOL OF ROCK at Theatre South Playhouse
June 23, 2022

What happens when you take a popular comedy film, add in new music by the king of musical theatre, and put it on stage with a talented cast? You get the Orlando premiere of SCHOOL OF ROCK presented by Theatre South Playhouse in Dr. Phillips - an energetic, entertaining, and eminently electric experience of epic proportions.

BWW Review: Florida Theatrical Association's BLOOD BROTHERS at The Abbey
June 12, 2022

“So, did you hear the story of the Johnstone twins? As like each other as two new pins. Of one womb born, on the self-same day, how one was kept and one given away?” These are the words spoken by the Narrator at the beginning of BLOOD BROTHERS, the long-running West End musical by Willy Russell which provides the perfect setup for the play that follows. BLOOD BROTHERS is not a show that gets produced that often, but that is likely exactly why the Florida Theatrical Association has opted to mount a production of the musical – to introduce it to new audiences and provide theatregoers the unique experience of seeing the show. I attended opening night and it was, in fact, the first time I have had the chance to see a live production even though I have been familiar with the piece due to its popularity in England and its not-as-successful run on Broadway in the early 1990’s. And though the piece itself has some challenges (more on that later) the FTA’s production is solid with outstanding and emotional performances by the cast and a creative vision true to the material

BWW Review: PUMP BOYS AND DINETTES at The Winter Park Playhouse
May 22, 2022

Somewhere on Highway 57 between Frog Level and Smyrna sits a little diner across from a service station where the pie is fresh, the beer is cold, and the gas is cheap (if that’s even possible these days). Such is the setting for the Off-Broadway hit musical PUMP BOYS AND DINETTES. And in its latest production of this feel-good musical, The Winter Park Playhouse delivers a toe-tapping, knee slapping good time.

BWW Review: LEGALLY BLONDE at Titusville Playhouse
May 8, 2022

There are some musicals that just make you smile and can do so regardless of how many times you have seen in them. For me, one of those shows is (and will always be) LEGALLY BLONDE THE MUSICAL. Read our critic's review about this production of this fun and uplifting musical,. Titusville Playhouse delivers a fresh, energetic and thoroughly entertaining take on the story of Miss Elle Woods and her journey of self-discovery.

BWW Review: AIDA at The Henegar Center
May 1, 2022

In the opening number of Elton John and Tim Rice’s hit musical, AIDA, Princess Amneris sings - “Every story, tale or memoir, every saga or romance, whether true or fabricated, whether planned or happenstance….All are tales of human failing, All are tales of love at heart.” and with those opening lines, she encapsulates perfectly the touching (and heart wrenching) story that audiences are about to witness. And in its current production of this classic love story, The Henegar Center in Melbourne delivers an AIDA that is thrilling from its first moments to its last and features some of the most powerful, emotional, and polished performances I have seen on stage in a very long time.

BWW Review: Florida Theatrical Association's ASSASSINS at Cheyenne Saloon
April 24, 2022

In the world of musical theatre there are productions that come along that deliver the perfect storm of creative expression. This elusive synergy can be due to the topic or setting being extremely relevant to the time that it is performed or can come from the blending of top-notch talent, creative vision and execution. Even more rarely, an opportunity comes along to mount a production in an unexpected but perfect setting for a given show. And sometimes, just sometimes, you get all the above. That is the best way I can describe the Florida Theatrical Association’s current production of Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman’s musical, ASSASSINS – a once in a lifetime opportunity to witness this wonderful piece of musical theatre, delivered by a stellar cast in an unlikely location – the Cheyenne Saloon in downtown Orlando.

BWW Review: A CHORUS LINE at Titusville Playhouse
April 9, 2022

A CHORUS LINE, the hit Broadway musical about performers auditioning for a Broadway show played for 6,137 performances in its original run due to several factors. Audiences simply connected with the characters on stage and related to their lives, their experiences, and their passion for pursuing their dreams. Add in a fabulous and catchy score and some amazing choreography and you have a recipe for an enthralling musical – in fact, one of the most popular musicals of all time. It is not surprising, then, that the Titusville Playhouse selected this classic to present as its latest production – providing audiences with an emotional, energetic, and wildly entertaining production that thrills from the first moments to the last.

BWW Review: THE MARVELOUS WONDERETTES: DREAM ON at The Winter Park Playhouse
March 29, 2022

What fun it is to take a stroll down memory lane and revisit the locations (and experiences) of our youth. Such journeys often include stops at familiar haunts, laughs at the fashions we thought were so hip at the time, and listening to the songs that served as the soundtrack to our formative years. Imagine, then, if you could roll all of those things into a musical, and you might get THE MARVELOUS WONDERETTES: DREAM ON – the current mainstage production at the Winter Park Playhouse. This fun, fabulous and fantastic time-machine of a show featuring four wonderfully talented women illustrates perfectly the kind of intimate, inviting and thoroughly entertaining production that The Winter Park Playhouse so often has to offer.

BWW Review: URINETOWN: THE MUSICAL at Little Radical Theatrics
March 27, 2022

There have been a lot of interesting concepts for musicals over the history of the artform. For the most part, the shows that push the boundaries of the musical theatre format stick to the Off-Off-Broadway theatres or Fringe festivals. But sometimes one of these genre-busting musicals makes it to the mainstream. Such is the case with URINETOWN: THE MUSICAL, which moved from the New York Fringe Festival to an Off-Broadway production to Broadway, securing ten Tony nominations (and three wins) back in 2002. And by producing URINETOWN: THE MUSICAL as just its fourth production since relocating to Orlando from New York, Non-Profit Community Theatre company Little Radical Theatrics delivered an audience pleasing production at the Mandell Studio Theatre at Orlando Shakes that featured a fun and creative concept, a dedicated and energetic ensemble (with some strong performances), making for a unique, but fun night at the theatre.

March 19, 2022

One of the brilliant things about musical theatre is it can take many forms. From splashy fun to deep and insightful, musicals can be as varied as any other narrative medium and can often surprise you in their ability to strike an emotional chord that you weren’t expecting. Such is the case with Jason Robert Brown and Marsha Norman’s musical, THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY. With an emotional story (based on the best-selling Robert James Waller novel) and a haunting and gorgeous score, this is a musical that reaches inside, grabs hold of your heart, and pulls you along for a roller coaster ride of emotions. And Osceola Arts, in its current production of this lesser-known but beautiful piece, does a great job bringing this timeless tale to vivid life.

March 15, 2022

A county spelling bee may not sound like a likely setting for a musical, but THE 25th ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE defies convention and delivers laughs and a heartwarming story that is sure to please. In the latest production on its Shuler Stage, Titusville Playhouse’s production of this hit musical is filled with quirky characters, fun staging and great music – while also illustrating some of the stresses impacting the children of today – pressure to succeed, parental involvement and the pros (and cons) of standing out from the crowd.

BWW Review: GORGEOUS at Renaissance Theatre Company
March 6, 2022

There’s something special about being the first audiences to see a new musical. For a musical theatre nerd like me, it is a thrill that is practically unmatched. And since I don’t live in New York City or thereabouts anymore, it is not something that happens that often. Which is why I was excited to be sitting in the audience for the first performance of an original musical, GORGEOUS, at the Renaissance Theatre Company. As Donald Rupe, Artistic Director and Co-founder of the Renaissance Theatre Company and creator (Book/Music/Lyrics) of GORGEOUS, shared during his curtain speech, the Ren aims to produce new and original theatre in Central Florida and beyond. And I am confident to say, as evidenced by this hilarious, irreverent and entertaining production, that mission is being lived out well by this not-even-a-year-old company, with a level of talent and passion that could hold its own with some of the most established theatres in the country.