Posts Tagged ‘American Idol’

Ace-Young-and-Diana-DeGarmo-Joseph-and-the-Amazing-Technicolor-Dreamcoat-Tour-Poster

 Ace Young as Joseph and Diana DeGarmo as Narrator. Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat National Tour 2014. Photography by Daniel A. Swalec

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat National Tour 2014. Photography by Daniel A. Swalec

 

As the audience waited in great anticipation for the 2 millionth visitor to enter DPAC last night, I quietly sat in my seat. I sat mesmerized by a smoke screen shielding the view of center stage; behind it was the colorful production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.  As the 2 millionth visitor award was presented, I watched a lifeless smoke stack begin to take on recognizable shapes; shifting shapes from giant ships to trains to crayons.  The journey through the biblical story of Joseph and his 11 jealous brothers begins with a simple alarm clock, jolting Joseph out of bed.

When I found out that the roles Joseph and The Narrator would be played by the husband and wife team of Ace Young and Diana DeGarmo I was anxious.  I found solace in the thought that, “If their fellow American Idol alumni Clay Aiken, Fantasia, and Carrie Underwood can do Broadway…so can Ace and Diana.”  I was half right, sorta kinda.

Diana DeGarmo brings a high energy character to life on the stage, keeping us informed of the story through her narration and song. However, I do question the use of a handheld microphone for her character. Yes, it gave her a prop, but it reminded me of when she competed on American Idol.  I wish she could have had both hands free to use to interact with the cast. All things considered, Diana DeGarmo is the anchor of the cast; she also carries the duo of leads onstage with a powerful personality, energetic smile, and phenomenal voice.

Ace Young has his strengths and weaknesses; he is an amazing dancer, but only an average actor. That dichotomy made me question the casting of him as Joseph.  He would have been able to “rock out” in one of the brother roles.  It is easy to see him as the lead in Rock of Ages or maybe even Roger from Rent. That being said, I don’t believe Ace’s style of singing was what Sir Webber had in mind for Joseph. His voice was once described by, former American Idol judge, Simon Cowell as “nasal”. I have to agree, he voice sounded very nasal in all of the songs he performed.

Andy Blankenbuehler takes the beautiful music from Andrew Lloyd Webber and lyrics of Tim Rice and creates a new production for the Broadway Tour.  His directorial concept takes the Book of Genesis story from clothing of the biblical times to clothing of the modern age.  Mix in some amazing Technicolor lighting, simple yet wesome moving set pieces and the journey is set. And thank you Andy for making the opening overture not boring and the curtain call the most amazing one I have ever experienced!

It is impossible to write about the show without mentioning the high energy choreography.  For the final number of Act 1, I felt that I was watching a high impact jazzercise video. I found myself I was waiting for Richard Simmons to prance on the stage to begin Sweatin’ to the Oldies.  Heck, I wasn’t even on stage and I was out of breath and sweating from their routines!

The words on this page will never be able to do justice to the set and lighting design.  Such great detail was put into the backdrop. Much thought was put into the multiple uses of the muslin curtains hanging from the fly system.  The quick transitions from one scene to the next were flawless and created beautiful scenes.

Although the characters of the 11 brothers are inherently bad because of their actions in selling Joseph into slavery, I still I fell in love with each and every one of them.  I wouldn’t mind if those cast members had a spin-off musical entitled 11 Cool Brothers and a Dude with a Coat.  The contrasting styles of song that each brother brings are unique; the audience is left wanting to hear more of their tales.  From back-woods country, to Parisian flair, to the Reggae beats; we witness the unique contrasting personalities that the family members possess.

One of the fascinating things about seeing and performing in live theatre is the ability to escape reality, and Joseph helped create that parallel universe.  Random singing, dancing, flashy costumes, and an Elvis sighting help me forget that I was sitting in Durham, NC and transplanted me to ancient Egypt.  I’ve known the music, known the story, but had never experienced a live performance of Joseph and the amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.  I’m truly glad that I went and witnessed this Webber classic.

 

 

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AMERICAN IDOL: Logo 2009. CR: FOX

Top Ten Finalists Including Two NC Natives

American Idol Live! 2014 Tour

Durham Performing Arts Center

July 13, 2014

No other show in TV history has proven to be a force like American Idol. Fans of the hit series can see this season’s talented Top Ten Finalists live when the American Idol Live! tour returns this summer.

Tickets go on sale Friday, May 9 at 10 a.m.:

Online at DPACnc.com

DPAC Ticket Center: 919.680.2787, 123 Vivian Street, Durham, NC

Ticketmaster.com / Ticketmaster Charge by phone at 800.745.3000

Once again, American Idol Live! has partnered with The Melanoma Research Alliance (www.curemelanoma.org).

For every ticket purchased for the tour, American Idol Live! will donate $1 to The Melanoma Research Alliance to help cure melanoma.

American Idol Live! gives fans the unique opportunity to be up close and personal with Season 13 Finalists C.J. Harris, Jena Irene, Caleb Johnson, Jessica Meuse, MK Nobilette, Alex Preston, Dexter Roberts, Majesty Rose, Malaya Watson and Sam Woolf.

The American Idol XIII Season Finale will air Tuesday, May 20, and Wednesday, May 21, on FOX, before this season’s Top Ten finalists continue on to the tour this summer. Past tours have featured stars such as Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson, Fantasia, Adam Lambert, Scotty McCreery, Phillip Phillips, Candice Glover and many more.

For the latest tour and ticketing information please visit:

www.americanidol.com/tour

www.facebook.com/idolslivetour

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Crown Center

Fayetteville, NC

February 16, 2014

Even before the question is posed, Fantasia makes clear the essence of her sound. “I’m a soul singer,” she says, with much pride and little hesitation. That’s who she is, at her core, and no matter the song she sings, her spirit seems to resonate from the speakers along with her voice. That’s the magic that Fantasia brings, every time. The North Carolina native has sold nearly three million records and 1.5 million digital tracks, domestically.

Tickets: HERE