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Mark McMullan delivers vocal masterclass as Joseph thrills packed-out audience

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat

New Theatre, Peterborough

I've not seen Britain's Got Talent, but judging by the performance of 2019 runner-up Mark McMullan, it certainly does what it says on the tin.

Joseph (Mark McMullan) and the narrator (Alexandra Doar). Photo: Pamela Raith
Joseph (Mark McMullan) and the narrator (Alexandra Doar). Photo: Pamela Raith

The Northern Irish singer was superb throughout in this Bill Kenwright production of the famous Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber comedy musical. His vocal range really is amazing and he led from the front during a superb show on Friday evening.

And it was great to see the theatre full again as the public of Peterborough and the surrounding area supports its new incarnation. I've been lucky enough to see Martin Shaw in Gaslight, Susan Penhaligon in Mousetrap, Jorgie Porter in Fame and Katya Jones in The Wizard of Oz, and with shows such as Cabaret, Billionaire Boy, Footloose and The Commitments coming up, the quality shows no sign of stopping.

Anyway, back to the show. Stars such as Jason Donovan, David Cassidy and Donny Osmond have previously taken the star role, which is all singing and dancing – there's hardly any spoken dialogue in this musical – but I doubt any of them could out-sing McMullan.

Pharaoh AKA Elvis (Henry Lawes). Photo: Pamela Raith
Pharaoh AKA Elvis (Henry Lawes). Photo: Pamela Raith

Retelling the Biblical story of Joseph, his eleven brothers and the coat of many colours, McMullan shines as we follow his story from a young dreamer, his father's favourite of his 12 sons, to the top of Egyptian high society, the desperation of prison and then to the Pharaoh's number two before his triumphant homecoming.

The songs are superb, with the infectious Any Dream Will Do the highlight, but others such as One More Angel in Heaven, Close Every Door To Me and the Joseph Megamix also staying in your head for days.

And it's not just McMullan who shines. Narrator Alexandra Doar is pretty much note perfect too, Henry Metcalfe is suitably authoritative as Joseph's dad Jacob and Henry Lawes was superb as the Pharaoh, played as Elvis Presley, of course.

The singing and dancing from the other brothers and the handmaidens was great too but special mention must be made of Amber Kennedy who absolutely owned the role of the promiscuous Mrs Potiphar.

A scene from Joseph: Photo: Pamela Raith
A scene from Joseph: Photo: Pamela Raith

The whole show was a dazzling success... as is becoming the norm at the New Theatre.

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