Scotland reviews 27 items
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at the Edinburgh Playhouse
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is aptly named. For although ‘serious’ theatregoers may turn their noses up at it with its pantomimic singing camels and pop-up sheep, this most enduring of all family shows is… amazing, and in glorious technicolor!

Forty-seven years after it made its professional debut as a 35-minute piece at the Edinburgh International Festival, it’s back in the city at the UK’s largest theatre, yet the sheer energy and spectacle of the first musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice to be staged in public seems to fill the cavernous space.

Bill Kenwright’s production is, not surprisingly considering how long he’s been directing it, slick and fast-paced, a kaleidoscope of colour and favourite songs, moving seamlessly from one effervescent scene to the next; an upbeat show when even Joseph’s sad tale of banishment, slavery and imprisonment comes second to the singing camels and a Pharaoh mask with flashing eyes.

Once again it is an X-Factor finalist who dons Joseph’s coat of many colours. And Jaymi Hensley, in his first major musical role, wears it perfectly, starting off as everyone’s favourite little brother but growing in stature - with a voice to match - in a captivating performance on a par with Phantom of the Opera.

He is strongly supported by his band of 11 brothers, high energy, entertaining dancers and singers, led by their ‘father’ in many ways, for not only does Henry Metcalfe play a revered Jacob but the 72-year-old is also the original choreographer.

The whole thing is held together by the Narrator, Trina Hill, whose pure voice soars throughout, while Andrew Geater, taking part in his first UK tour, is a particular favourite of mine as Pharaoh aka Elvis. I could have listened to his voice all night! Of course, none of them could be where they are without musical director Rich Morris and his musicians.

With Sean Cavanagh’s design, Nick Richings’ lighting, Dan Samson, who manages to overcome the sound difficulties associated with such a large space, and Gary Lloyd’s additional new choreography, this visual and audio delight looks set to run for another 47 years – at least!
Photo: Pamela Raith

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is at the Edinburgh Playhouse until March 23.
Box Office:  0844 871 3014
It then continues touring:
Mar 26-30: Rhyl Pavilion 01745 33 00 00
Apr 2-6: Theatre Royal, Newcastle 08448 11 21 21
Apr 9-13: Milton Keynes 0844 871 7652
Apr 16-20: Storyhouse, Chester 01244 409 113
May 14-18: Wales Millenium Center, Cardiff 029 2063 6464
May 21-25: Hippodrome, Darlington 01325 405405
May 28-Jun 01: Winter Gardens, Blackpool 0844 856 1111
Jun 04-15: Grand Theatre, Leeds 0844 848 2700
Jun 18-22: Derby Theatre 01332 59 39 39
Jun 25-29: Regent Theatre, Ipswich 01473 433100
Jul 02-13: Hippodrome, Birmingham 0844 338 5000
Jul 16-20: New Theatre, Oxford 0844 871 3020