James Lombardino reflects on playing the role of Joseph

James Lombardino, Charleston Stage’s Professional Resident Actor reflects on playing the role of Joseph in Charleston Stage’s season opener Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.

Q:  Throughout the action of the story, Joseph transforms from a naive boy to the responsible ruler of a nation.  Can you identify one major turning point for his character and do you feel the change is a natural progression?

A:  I think Joseph has two main turning points during the course of the show. The first turning point happens when Joseph realizes that his brothers have betrayed him, and never really liked him in the first place. Joseph has an overwhelming gift and doesn’t yet realize how to use it. This gift leaves him feeling isolated and alone. It also causes many unfortunate events to happen to him.

The second turning point comes as Joseph has a chance to revenge against his brothers for their betrayel. After having been dealt so many bad cards in life, Joseph realizes that revenge is not the answer to peace and happiness and decides to grant his brothers grace.

I believe that all of the progressions Joseph goes through, although much more dramatic at times than real life, are natural in nature. We all have turning points where we must choose the positive road or the negative.



(James Lombardino singing “Close Every Door”)

Designing Costumes For Joseph

by Barbara Young, Costume Designer

Designing costumes for Joseph lead to many different places, but it was important to always keep in mind that the ancient story be interwoven thru the entire show. Designing the historical costumes was less difficult than adding the hundreds of other pieces that make up the complete costume plot. The time between scenes was so short that everything needed to be easily changed, added, or removed. Each different location required its own specific design and color represented each location. Various locations included a ranch with cowboys and angels, black and white Go-Go dancers, beret wearing Frenchmen and a mime, and of course, Egypt with its turquoise and gold.

The way the costumes were used presented their own set of problems. Somersaulting, flipping, and toe kicking dancers required specific costumes that would stand up to rough usage. The color palette had to work with the various colors in the coat. So many different fabrics were used to create a picture of belonging. Even though traveling to so many places was required, the ancient theme is constantly seen in some way. The volunteer elves of the costume shop were up to the task and Joseph is truly a Technicolored Dream Show!


(Musical number “One More Angel In Heaven”, featuring cowboy costumes)



(Musical number “Go, Go, Go Joseph”, featuring Go-Go dancer costumes)

‘Dreamcoat’ a delightful opener


REVIEW:The Post and Courier, September 11, 2009

 ‘Dreamcoat’ a delightful opener

Post and Courier Reviewer

Anytime you get to see a show where the joy of the performers comes rolling across the stage and into the audience as inexorably as the incoming tide, your time and money are well spent.

Charleston Stage left a lot of people happy as Lowcountry clams Thursday night, opening its 32nd season with a celebration of zaniness, ‘Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat’.

Associate Artistic Director Marybeth Clark directed the liveliest production of this musical this reviewer has ever seen, using a huge cast, filling every inch of the big stage at Sottile with big colorful scenes that grab the attention of everyone in the family and hold it fast for a roller-coaster 90 minutes,

New Music Director Amanda Wansa kept the singers on cue and her band moving.  John Kennedy on bass and  John Durham on guitar and Brian Widlowski on percussion sounded like a full orchestra on the 26 musical numbers that run the gamut of musical styles.

The Professional Resident Acting Company’s members make appreciable differences, too.

James Lambardino is an affecting Joseph, adored by his father Jacob (local veteran Kyle W. Barnette, who also plays Pharoah—as a very convincing  Elvis), envied by 11 brothers, stand-outs all, especially our pros Justin Lewis and Christopher Diaz.

The Narrator, almost never off stage, is handled beautifully by Priya Paranthaman with a big, pleasing voice and personality. Lindsey Lamb knocks us over with her dance numbers.

Over 200 costumes by Barbara Young, eye-popping sets by Stefanie Christensen and Julian Wiles, and excellent sound add up to a thorough delight.

A Coat of Many Colors: Size: XXXXXXXXXXXXXLarge!

In addition to the over 200 dazzling original costumes in the upcoming Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Charleston Stage Resident Costumer Barbara Young and her costume crew created  not one but two coats of many colors.  The first Joseph receives from his father and wears in act one and the second is a gigantic 20 foot wide one that magically appears in act two.   Altogether more than 2000 yards of fabric (much of it generously donated thank goodness!) was used for the 200+  colorful coats, costumes and sets for this mega-musical spectacular which opens this week at the College of Charleston’s Sottile Theatre.

Here are some photos of the two coats of many colors from this past weekend’s dress rehearsal.

Joseph's Act One Coat of Many Colors

Joseph's Extra-large Mega Coat that Appears in Act Two.