ST. GEORGE — Anyone who has not yet witnessed the smorgasbord of theatrical splendor that is Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat should really just “Go, Go, Go, Go” see Hurricane Theatrical’s latest production of the show! Telling the biblical story of Jacob and his 12 sons — eventually known as the twelve tribes of Israel — the show follows Jacob’s favorite son, Joseph, as he is beaten by his jealous brothers and sold into slavery in Egypt. While enslaved he is wrongfully accused and imprisoned and later plucked from obscurity to interpret the Pharaoh’s dreams, which leads to his eventual reunion with his family.

But don’t worry. It’s not as heavy as it sounds.

Fashioned into a fast-paced, upbeat musical at the masterful hands of creators Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber, it’s little wonder Joseph has been a favorite among theater goers for roughly fifty years. Featuring an eclectic blend of musical styles ranging from country to calypso, and Elvis to a children’s choir, Joseph has something for everyone to enjoy, with plenty of room for directorial creativity and interpretation as well.

With a show as beloved and as frequently performed as Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, one of the main challenges for any theater company is to strike a balance between giving audiences the familiar show they crave while also incorporating elements to set their particular production apart. In the case of Hurricane Theatrical’s recent iteration, the cast and crew, led by director Kyle Myrick, manages to offer both the traditional and the unexpected and carry it out with flying technicolors.

Although this musical is at its best when supported by a strong ensemble — something this rendition of Joseph did extremely well — the show would not be itself without an impeccable actress in the role of the Narrator, and of course, an extremely talented Joseph. Thanks to Jill Bearden and James David respectively, those roles are in unbelievably good hands.

Lighting up the stage with her smile and spunk, Bearden’s narration moves the story along at a healthy clip, putting the audience and everyone on stage at ease. Her playful glances to the crowd and her high-fives and hip bumps with the cast make the duality of her role clear. She is there to tell the story, but she’s also very much part of the action. The latter is particularly evident when her vocal strength soars above the rest during songs like “Jacob and Sons” and “Joseph’s Coat,” elevating these fun, energetic numbers to even greater heights.

Similarly, David effortlessly shoulders the challenge of the title role. His strong vocal talent is on full display from the opening notes of the “Prologue,” but it is the emotional apex of the show, the song “Close Every Door” at the end of Act I, that best showcases his capabilities. At the song’s climax, David steps beyond the confines of the written notes, expanding the melody to put his own mark on the moment — and it is fantastic!

One of the unique elements in this production of Joseph is the director’s choice to cast several young people in roles that are often filled by older actors. Most notable was the role of Benjamin, played by twelve-year-old Greyson Neilson. Since the twelve brothers would obviously span a range of ages in the biblical account, it stands to reason that Benjamin would be at the tail end of the age range. The decision to show him as a child in this production, however, adds a depth to the relationship between Joseph and Benjamin – as well as the relationship between Benjamin and the rest of the brothers – that is typically unexplored in this script.

The casting decision is helped immensely by the maturity Neilson exhibits both in his acting and dancing capabilities, where he manages to hold his own even with a cast of older, potentially more experienced performers. Benjamin’s wife, also a younger actress – played by Taylor Pearce – proves to be an excellent counterpart for him, particularly as they take their turn at the front of the stage during “Go, Go, Joe” and show off their disco dancing skills.

Some of the more traditional elements of the show, such as the cowboy crooning on “One More Angel in Heaven” and the enthusiastic “Joseph’s Coat,” deserve equally high praise as the less traditional elements. Of particular note is the strong counter melody provided by the female cast on these songs, and the impressive acrobatics and dance moves showcased by the entire group. Choreographers Sammy Myrick and Courtney Pearce manages to give each production number its own personality while maintaining an underlying sense of continuity that creates an interesting, but seamless flow.

Fortunately, all these positive elements are visible thanks to proper lighting, something Hurricane Theatrical tends to do quite well. In the case of Joseph, the lighting is designed by Kyle Myrick and executed by light board operator Wren Woodbury and spotlight operators Cali Bliss and Henry Janke. The colors, movement and overall lighting scheme for each scene enhance the action taking place on stage, sometimes directing the audience’s attention to a specific area, but more often punctuating the emotion and energy of the scene.

From curtain to curtain, Hurricane Theatrical’s production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat surpasses the expectations many may have of a small-town theater company, and although “Any Dream Will Do,” this is one dream audiences won’t soon want to wake from.

 Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat plays at Hurricane Theatrical (92 S 100 W Hurricane, UT) through May 11. Tickets are $8-18. For more information go online to