A coat of many colors is a biblical tale that inspired Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice's musical, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.
The Valley Theater Company will present the delightful musical April 27-28 and May 4-5 at the Princess Theatre in downtown Prosser.
The storyline is family-friendly and follows the life of Joseph, from the book of Genesis, who is the 11th of Jacob's 12 sons.
Webber's version starts with a narrator singing the tale of Joseph to children while encouraging them to dream because Joseph was a dreamer. But his father knew his son had a gift of predicting the future and this made him the favorite son, which didn't set well with his brothers.
As the narrator tells the story, the brothers decide to sell their brother to slave traders, who take Joseph to Egypt. They tell their father he was killed and show him Joseph's tattered coat smeared with blood.
Joseph, however, ends up being brought before Pharaoh, who has been plagued with a recurring dream. In the dream, there are seven fat cows, seven skinny cows, seven healthy ears of corn and seven dead ears of corn. Joseph interprets Pharaoh's dream as a warning that Egypt will have seven years of plentiful crops, then seven years of famine. Pharaoh then puts Joseph in charge of preparing for the famine, which saves Egypt from doom.
The story is told completely in song with Matt Gray as Joseph and Courtney Eggert as the narrator. Both are Tri-City actors.
"Learning music is one of my favorite things," Eggert said. "This role requires a ton of singing. I love how much I get to interact with the audience, as well as the cast."
Gray, 30, said it was his mother who introduced him to the story of Joseph years ago via Donny Osmond, who played Joseph on Broadway.
"It all started with my mother's obsession with Donny Osmond after mom and her friend saw it," Gray said. "After she purchased the CD, I became familiar with the story via musical osmosis."
When he auditioned, he wasn't expecting to land the role of Joseph, as it had been a while since he had done any singing.
"The biggest challenges in tackling this role has been retraining my voice and ensuring I am spending enough time with my family," he said.
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat originally was written as a pop cantata when first performed in London in 1968. It premiered on Broadway in 1982 in its current full-length version.
Amy Milne, who directs the musical, grew up listening to the music of Joseph because her parents owned a copy of the record with the original Broadway cast.
"I fell in love with this show many years ago and would listen (to the record) over and over," Milne said. "Years later, I was fortunate to see the show presented in London and fell in love all over again.
"And it's a dream come true to be able to present this show here in the valley."
Curtain time is 7:30 p.m. each day. Tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for students and seniors. Tickets are available at the Princess Theatre box office.
*Dori O'Neal: 582-1514; firstname.lastname@example.org