Posted by: faithtravelfocus | June 7, 2010

Joseph Flying High in Lancaster, PA.

Joseph of the Old Testament was a dreamer, and Lancaster, Pennsylvania’s Sight & Sound Theater’s glossy new production about his life certainly has him indulging his fantasies. And it’s the latest reason why this Millennium Theater draws nearly a million people a year to its performances. Just watch Joseph fly high over the audience of over 2,000 people through the sun, moon and stars, cloaked of course in his coat of many colors – the one his father Jacob gave him. 

My church group of 50+ were in a sold-out Saturday performance last weekend. Many of us had seen previous shows in the theater, which now has a clone in Branson, MO. “Joseph” met and exceeded all expectations for yet another exciting theatrical experience. Most amazing is how the action captures all ages, from about four to elders. It’s pure family and multi-generational.

Joseph’s story of foregiveness is powerful enough, and this production’s visuals carry the story of Jacob’s favored son, abused brother, and later, high Egyptian ruler. 

Joseph was one of 12 brothers. He incurred the wrath of his siblings when he told them he dreams that everyone would one day bow down to him. They sold him into slavery and tell their father he was killed by a wild animal. Through his life of ups and downs we went through his story in Genesis 27-30, carried by the actions and dialogue of a cast of 45 and an array of live animals – including trained rats, a raven and a Sphinx cat.There’s the evil Lady Potiphar who provides some of the tension and a storyline with a happy ending. Joseph chooses to reconcile with his brothers rather than destroy them. 

The sets transport viewers right back to ancient Egypt, the era’s most powerful empire in the world. We were treated to Pharaoh’s cup bearer’s grand home, replete with gigantic statues, gardens, and gilded walls and gateways. A big ship sails across Nile waters of undulating aqua silk, and past brightly colored fish and a crocodile which exits by center aisle. A feast for the Pharaoh brings a dance and musical number worth the price of admission. The 300-foot wrap around stage has action moving at a pace that gives nobody time to doze off. Original music by TV and film composer Don Harper (“National Treasure,” “Lion King”) gives the show a contemporary flow. 

In the end, it’s the foregiveness story power that brings people to their feet. Joseph was a hero for the ages, and this stage gives him full court. 

Lancaster County is a great day or overnight trip from many points in the Mid-Atlantic region. Live theater is just one of the attractions. Pair a performance with some of what Lancaster’s bountiful restaurant tables serve up, outlet shopping, kiddie themeparks, the bucolic scenery of Amish farms and local culture – and you have yourself a winning summer combination, close to home. 

Performances of “Joseph” continue through October. Information is at both and


  1. the article makes me want to go see the production!

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