2013-03-15 / Community

RTC ‘Joseph’ Biblical Hit

The Rockaway Theatre Company opened their first production since Hurricane Sandy to wild applause and rave reviews.

In partnership with Our Lady of Grace Church, the RTC presented “Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” at the Ave Maria Catholic Academy in Old Howard Beach.

An imaginative musical based on the Old Testament tale, “Joseph” was written by Andrew Loyd-Webber and Tim Rice when they were respectively 19 and 23. They would later go on to write “Jesus Christ Superstar” and “Evita.”

In the RTC’s production Tim Huston was a stand out as Joseph, possessing both a strong voice and physical presence. Musically and dramatically he connected with the audience and moved easily through both the slapstick and poignant moments of the show.

Katherine Robinson brought a natural grace to the role of the Narrator. John Panepinto was a favorite in the featured role of Pharaoh.

Together director Chasmond Peacock and musical director Jeffrey Arzberger’s new take on the production and different touch to the songs made the show delightfully fresh even for those long familiar with the musical.

The large multi-talented cast was equally adept at singing, dancing and acting in a production that runs from comedy to haunting drama with many musical styles mixed in along the way.

The costumes, lighting and staging were all notably first-rate, especially for a show done entirely away from the RTC’s Post Theater home base at Fort Tilden.

It was fitting that the show took place in the still storm patched school auditorium. The pre-show audience mingling also took on the air of a Howard Beach/ Rockaway/ Brooklyn/ Broad Channel reunion.

As RTC stated in their program, “Both the Rockaway and Howard Beach communities were decimated by the ravages of the storm,” noting it is a common bond that unites them.

Proceeds from the show’s six performances went to benefit restoration of both RTC’s theater and Our Lady of Grace.

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