Lee High School's "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" is shaping up to be something even more distinctive than usual.
The original director of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Old Testament adventure, Kevin J. McCarthy, who introduced "Joseph" to Ford's Theatre in the District in 1980, is the vocal director of the production. He has brought his experience and insight to the piece.
Artistic director Trena Weiss-Null is thrilled to be collaborating with McCarthy on the show. "It is truly exciting for the kids, as well as myself, to be privy to Kevin's expertise, exuberance, and sheer love of the music. He is such a consummate professional and is so intimate with the material that we all learn new interpretations and nuance at every rehearsal."
Weiss-Null and McCarthy met at Nativity Catholic Church where he is the musical director. Weiss-Null's son, now a music major at Virginia Tech, and McCarthy had worked together for years at Nativity and brought the two together thinking they had a lot in common artistically. The two families have become close and Weiss-Null convinced McCarthy to cram "Joseph" into his busy schedule this spring.
Weiss-Null did the show first in 1991 when the production was a little closer to the way McCarthy did it in 1980. The show has undergone several revisions since then with the recent stage tour and film.
McCarthy and Weiss-Null are like-minded in their concept of the piece and Lee's production will be closer to the original flavor of the show.
"I am a little nervous about Kevin and Deb seeing the show in May," said Weiss-Null. "Considering that he music-directed and played the show nearly a thousand times from 1978-1980 and Debbie (McCarthy's wife) was in that original production, I feel a little extra pressure to do it justice. Fortunately, we have a very talented cast and crew who are committed to making this the best show we've done so far. I really feel it'll be something special."