By MELANIE ARMSTRONG
“Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” keeps going and going and going in Utah.
Provo Theatre Company’s “Joseph” adds a new flavor to the collection of “Joseph” shows.
PTC’s interpretation of “Joseph” is relatively relaxed. Whether it’s because of the intimate setting or the ingenuity of the actors, this production seems to be all about having fun.
While director Charles Lynn Frost preserves the peppy musical score, he adds a fresh touch with an imaginative interpretation.
PTC’s “Joseph” localizes the much-performed operetta with BYU/Utah mummies and I-15 construction workers.
They also borrow from Hollywood, quoting from “Titanic” and “Singing in the Rain.” For a few scenes the five-person chorus dons pale pink jackets, like the ones worn “Grease’s” Pink Ladies.
PTC’s production also invents some new character spoofs. The butler (Troy Williams) and baker (Brice Hawks) come straight from the set of Saturday Night Live. The disco scene also features the Spice Girls, who suit the scene as well as any go-go girl.
Corey Bench’s boyish face and dynamic performance add up to a stellar performance as Joseph. His innocent looks and magnificant voice harmonize to create a charming character. Lisa Weight’s strong soprano complements Bench in her role as a narrator.
The script of “Joseph” demands strong one-scene appearances by a stiff money-bags “Potiphar” (Chuck Manuele) and an Elvis-impersonating “Pharoah” (Stephen Briggs) — with both hamming up these parts.
The most surprising character in PTC’s show is Jacob (Marc Haddock). Instead of a crusty old man hidden behind a long white beard, Smith plays the jolly dad, taking his favorite son golfing and acting like a dumb tourist on his way to Egypt.
Despite the fact that over 20 people are on stage at some times, the play moved fluidly.
The choreography, by Mandy Berry Young, brings the actors down the aisles, where guests may be grabbed for a calypso dance or romanced by Mrs. Potiphar (Laura Croft Maw).
A simple, but creative, scenic design smooths the transitions between scenes. Designed by Russ Richins, the centerpiece of the set is a rotating platform with a set of stairs.
The finishing touch of this performance is the brave costumes of Jana Nielsen. She boldly dresses the brothers in contrasting stripes and plaids. The comfy, casual costumes match this interpretation of Joseph perfectly.
“Joseph” will play through August 10 at the Pioneer Theatre Company. Tickets are $12.50 and $15. Students receive a discount on Wednesday nights. The play starts at 8 p.m.