The Hurrah Players bring Technicolor magic to Suffolk

Published 9:54 pm Monday, October 9, 2023

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The Hurrah Players are bringing “Technicolor” back to Suffolk. The Norfolk theater group is set to take the stage with the famous musical, “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 22, at the Suffolk Center for Cultural Arts. The long-running musical based on Genesis 39 in the Bible tells the story of Joseph in a rags to riches play with lyrics by Tim Rice and compositions by Andrew Lloyd Webber.

Hurrah Players Theater Company Founder, Executive Director and Artistic Director Hugh Copeland talked about the overall story of the play.

“Jacob had twelve sons. He favored Joseph, made the brothers really jealous. He gave Joseph a beautiful coat that really made the brothers jealous, so they sold him as a slave. He went to Egypt where he was a slave; Joseph could foretell dreams, so because of that, he became very tight with the pharaoh …”

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Copeland further detailed Joseph’s family moving to Egypt after a famine at home and rediscovering their disowned brother. 

“ … They did not recognize him because he was then rich with gold, and Joseph welcomed them back. So it’s the Bible story of redemption, love and acceptance,” he said.

Copeland talked about what drew him to the play, noting people’s familiarity with the story of Joseph and the show’s musical compositions by Webber, known for “Joseph…,” “Evita,” “Cats,” and “Phantom of the Opera.” Likewise, he noted a Virginia talent who took part in the show and, since then, went on to bigger heights.

“This is the third time we have done the show in 24 years. The girl that played The Narrator went on to become Tony-Winning Adrienne Warren. She won the Tony for playing Tina Turner on Broadway. She was with us many years, so that was like ‘Oh people like this show, look at how successful she’s been,’’ Copeland said. “We know the show is a great show [and] solid enough. It has a lot of meaty characters that’s done in song and dance. We know this cast is abundant in talent, so we know that there are going to be some stars coming out of this one.”

Copeland commended the cast’s energy and what they have been bringing to create the show.

“Of course, they’re very familiar with Andrew Lloyd Webber, they love the music in the show … They’re very excited about doing it,” he said. “The fact that they know that it’s been one of Hurrah’s successes with the people who have been in it before, so they just want to get into the meat of it and prove themselves.”

He discussed what first-time viewers will expect from the performance, noting both the “beautiful music” and the “excellent choreography.” 

“Lisa Wallace is one of the finest choreographers in the state, and she is our resident choreographer. Diana Swenson is our musical director. The show is difficult in the harmonies, and she’s a champ in teaching harmonies, so the music and the choreography is amazing. Our set people, Scott Chasey who is an actual firefighter, but he has been for the last 14 years our set designer. He has brilliant ideas,” Copeland said. “Of course, there’s the story, but there’s the emotional impact of love and redemption at the end of the show, too.”

Copeland said two words on what he hopes viewers will take away from the play: “Feel good.”

“That there’s always hope for redemption, there’s always hope for forgiveness, and the fact that this musical shows that and at the same time, you’ll have a greater appreciation for the music of Andrew Lloyd Webber. It’s a feel good show … It’s a perfect show to realize how important our families are,” he ended.

For more information, go to or call 757-923-0003.