Take some amazing music, some amazing choreography, some amazing costumes—one in particular—and what do you get? “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” of course. For its 60th Mainstage production, Arizona Broadway Theatre brings back the Andrew Lloyd Webber classic beginning Friday, July 12, and running through Saturday, Aug. 18.
After debuting off-Broadway in 1981, the play came to Broadway in 1982 and was nominated for a number of Tony Awards, including that of Best Musical. It ran for 747 performances and was brought back in 1993 for a revival that ran for 231 performances. Donny Osmond later toured with the musical and starred in the 1999 movie.
The story comes from the Book of Genesis, where Joseph, favored son of Jacob, is sold into slavery by his jealous brothers. Though a slave in Egypt, Joseph finds favor with his ability to interpret dreams and is made second-in-command to Pharaoh. He uses his position to prepare for a major famine he knows will soon take place. When his brothers travel to Egypt to purchase food, the end result is reconciliation and forgiveness.
ABT will be calling on its alumni for this landmark production. Out of the 20 professional actors appearing in the show, only two are new to the ABT stage. Some have been part of ABT since the first season when the shows were produced in a tent.
Starring as Joseph is Ryan Michael Crimmins, last seen at ABT as Freddy in “My Fair Lady.” The New York City resident lays claim to numerous credits, both New York and regional, including the part of Link in “Hairspray,” Marius in “Les Miserables,” Roger in “RENT,” Jamie in “The Last Five Years” and Willard in “Footloose.” Crimmins, who studied music at Rider University, also appeared in the first U.S. production of “The Journey West,” a musical by Damon Albarn.
Narrating the musical is Laura Berger, whose most recent ABT appearance was as Kala in “Tarzan.” She has also performed in other ABT productions as Doris Walker in “Miracle on 34th Street,” Ethel McCormack in “Footloose,” Tessie Tura in “Gypsy,” M’Lynn in “Steel Magnolias” and Kaye in “The Taffetas.” Berger has also taken part in ABT’s Encore Room Series and teaches drama to preschool children at Arizona’s Childsplay.
Additional cast members include Jeremy Sartin as Zebulon and Jesse Berger as Jacob. An Arizona resident, Berger has appeared at ABT in “9 to 5,” “Baby, the Musical,” “All Shook Up,” “The Full Monty,” and in the national tour of “Ferdinand the Bull” for Childsplay. Sartin has appeared in ABT’s “All Shook Up,” “Cats,” “Miss Saigon,” “Annie Get Your Gun” and “A Christmas Carol,” as well as numerous regional productions.
Other alums returning to ABT are Leonardo Altafini, Trisha Hart Ditsworth, Joseph Donnelly, Lynzee Jaye Paul 4man, Shelley Jenkins, David Kirsch, Cullen Law, Colin Lee, Chica Loya, Brad Rupp, Adam Shaff, Scott Shedenhelm, Laurie Trygg and Alissa Tucker. Appearing on the ABT stage for the first time are Nic Bryan and Kyshawn Lane.
In addition, more than 50 children will join the professional actors on stage to make up the children’s choir.
Taking his 24th turn at directing for ABT is Joseph V. Martinez. Another returning veteran is choreographer Kurtis W. Overby. Costume design is by Tamara Diersen Treat.
Order tickets online or call the box office at (623) 776-8400. Arizona Broadway Theatre is located at 7701 W. Paradise Lane in Peoria, Ariz.
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