BWW Review: JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT at Ridgefield Playhouse
On Saturday, February 24, I had the pleasure of seeing a highly entertaining performance of JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT at the Ridgefield Playhouse, in Ridgefield, CT. This musical written by Andrew Lloyd Webber, with lyrics by Tim Rice is produced by ACT of CT, directed by Daniel C. Levine, and choreographed by Nathan Peck.
The cast is accompanied by a band of talented musicians, conducted by Bryan Perri. The musicians are up on stage, prominently shown. A screen that runs video effects is in the back of the stage, displayed throughout the show. Entrances come from the sides of the stage and up the aisles through the audience, including some flawlessly executed running entrances that simultaneously involve multiple children. There is no set, in the strictest sense, as none is needed. Daniel C. Levine and Nathan Peck maximize the usage of the stage, given the high number of people who simultaneously grace the stage with their presence.
The 36 local children in this production sang with excellent harmony, as they cooperated with each other to always be exactly where they needed to be, doing exactly what they needed to do, making Ridgefield proud of the talent, focus, and discipline displayed by our youth. Most importantly, the children all look like they are having a wonderful time up on stage. The joy they all show, particularly on their appearance in the song, "Go, Go, Go, Joseph," is a wonderful sight to behold.
The Biblical story of Joseph, son of Jacob, is told through the music, with some deviations from the Genesis account, but still conveying the positive messages of redemption and how God gives us the power to overcome even the most severe obstacles, regardless of our situations in life. The show extols virtuous obedience to God both through Joseph's willingness to forgive his brothers, and through Joseph's uncompromising rejection of the unsolicited advances of a married woman.
Four local adults, and twenty Broadway actors join the children on stage, led by Hunter Ryan Herdlicka who shines in the role of Joseph, with a strong stage presence and wonderful singing, particularly highlighted in the moving ballad "Close Every Door."
Christine Dwyer's stellar voice enhances the production in her unique role as a singing narrator, moving the story along in a smooth manner. Like with Hunter Ryan Herdlicka, Christine Dwyer's sings the lyrics in a crisp and clear manner, helping the audience understand exactly what is happening.
Ridgefield's own Ira Joe Fisher shows great emotion authentically portraying the role of Jacob.
I highly recommend JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT. One performance remains scheduled. You can get your tickets for that Sunday, February 25th 2:00 PM. show at https://ridgefieldplayhouse.org or by calling 203-438-5795.