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Connellsville musical showcases spectrum of students' talents

| Saturday, March 2, 2013, 8:12 p.m.
Matt Wiltrout plays Joseph and sings to the chorus in the opening number of 'Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.' MARILYN FORBES I FOR THE TRIBUNE-REVIEW

What better way to open your new auditorium up to the public then to stage a wonderful musical production, and that is exactly what the students of Connellsville High School will do with this weekend's staging of “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.”

Director Henry Molinaro will bring the Andrew Lloyd Webber show that is based on the coat of many colors story of Joseph from the Bible‘s Book of Genesis.

Fondly referred to in many cases as a “rock opera” the show runs the gamut of musical genres, from western music to calypso to disco and even a little Elvis-inspired music to keep the audiences toes tapping and hands clapping.

“It's a really good show,” said Matt Wiltrout, 17, who will portray Joseph. “It's like a modern-day opera. There is no talking, just all singing, and I think that it's going to be a really great show.”

Knowing that he had several strong voices to work with, Molinaro chose the musical because of his vast selection of in-house talent.

“Like every year, I select a show based on the talent that I have,” Molinaro said. “This show is going to work very well with the set of kids that I have musically.”

Molinaro said that the show is challenging for the students as they are all featured almost through the entire production, but that continued exposure also gives them all a sense of importance.

“All of the kids are on the stage almost the entire show,” Molinaro said. “I think it gives them all a feeling that they are all stars of the show, and it's terrific for all of the kids to have this kind of opportunity.”

The school's new auditorium will be a great background for the show as the public will get its first glimpse of the new facility.

“Everything is new,” Molinaro said of the interior, seats, lighting and sound.

“The sound is just incredible now. You can sit anywhere in the auditorium and not have a problem hearing anything. It's great.”

Productions manager Heidi Eutsey said there will be four entrances open for the show, two on both sides of the building.

“We'll have wheelchairs and escorts at all the doors,” Eutsey said in reference to some public concern over the ongoing renovations in the school.

“It will be easy access for everyone.”

The stage will be filled with brightly costumed performers who will be dancing and singing as the make their way through the production.

“There is a lot of fun dance in this,” choreographer Deborah Luczka said. “We're doing dances from the '50s, '60s and '70s. It's going to be so exciting that I don't think anyone could possibly be bored.”

There are still plenty of good seats available for all the performances.

Show times will be 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and 2 p.m. March 10.

Tickets will be $10 for Thursday's performance and $12 for all other shows.

Marilyn Forbes is a freelance writer.

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