Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat Dances its Way to The Segal Centre
After 21 sold-out shows and the META Award for Outstanding Community Theatre Production, the Cote Saint-Luc Dramatic Society (CSLDS) is bringing back its crowd-pleasing Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat for a limited run, this time at The Segal Centre. After a stunning yet serious production of Kander and Ebb's Cabaret this June, the CSLDS felt they needed to provide a family-friendly offering for their audience base. Known colloquially as "Joseph", this Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice musical is comedic retelling of the classic bible story through various musical genres, from country, to rock 'n roll, to motown, to calypso, and more. I wondered how a choreographer felt about the challenge of creating the cast's contrasting routines for "Joseph".
In Cote Saint-Luc's original production, Choreographer, Alexia Gourd, took classic dance moves from each musical genre and infused them into the musical numbers, while still maintaining a consistent look and feel of her signature choreography. "The challenge is to be diverse within the styles all while maintaining the choreo in one common universe," she explained.
We went on to discuss the challenges of remounting a show that the performers haven't rehearsed in over a year. "For many it came back fairly quickly while running the number," comment Gourd. "I had to relearn my own choreography. Thankfully, I made tutorial videos to help in the learning and review process. We have a lot of new cast members for the remount, so those videos weren't a luxury!"
Back in 2018, Gourd managed to cram a large cast onto the small Harold Greenspon Auditorium stage and had them all bopping away in close quarters. I asked her about the impact of moving the remount to The Segal. "Expanding to The Segal will just give us the opportunity to let the spacing and the choreos breathe a little bit. Thankfully The Segal's mainstage sightline is all forward, similar to the space we're used to performing in."
Stage Director, Anisa Cameron, was also thrilled to be at the large professional theatre space. "Although we love and are so grateful for our home, The Harold Greenspon Auditorium, The Segal's Sylvan Adams Theatre stage is two and half times bigger than our little jewel box in Côte Saint-Luc. This means that our massive cast will be able to have the room to breathe vivacious life into the piece. Our 2018 production was high energy, but being able to perform on the Segal stage will blast that energy through the roof! "
CSLDS's remount of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat will see some new faces onstage and behind the scenes with the addition of Associate Musical Director, Benjamin Kwong and Sound Designer, Cristobal Urbina, both of whom were part of the Cabaret team.
This award-winning production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat runs for 75 minutes with no intermission. The remount will be August 21 - 25, with just seven performances at The Segal Centre for the Performing Arts (5170 Côte Ste-Catherine). Tickets range from $20 to $39 and can be purchased by calling 514.739.7944 or online at segalcentre.org.