Full Synopsis

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat

Act I

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is based on the story of Joseph from the Bible’s Book of Genesis.

A Narrator opens the show by introducing Joseph, the dreamer ("Prologue”). The Narrator then draws the audience’s attention to Joseph’s father and his 12 sons ("Jacob and Sons"). Jacob has given Joseph, his youngest and favourite son, a multi-colored coat and his brothers are envious of him ("Joseph's Coat").

The brothers’ jealousy is compounded by Joseph's dreams, which suggest that he is destined to rule over them ("Joseph's Dreams"). To stop this from happening they try to kill him, before changing their minds and selling him as a slave to some passing Ishmaelites ("Poor, Poor Joseph").

To hide what they have done, Joseph’s brothers and their wives tell Jacob that his beloved son has been killed by a wild animal. As proof, they show Joseph’s coat, which they have torn to pieces and covered in goat’s blood ("One More Angel in Heaven"). When the devastated Jacob exits, the brothers and wives cheerfully celebrate Joseph’s departure (“Hoedown”).

Meanwhile, Joseph is taken to Egypt (“Journey to Egypt”). There he is bought as a slave by the wealthy Potiphar. He works hard and is promoted, eventually running the household. Joseph catches the eye of Mrs. Potiphar and although he turns down her advances, Potiphar sees them together and jumps to the wrong conclusion ("Potiphar"). Furious, he throws Joseph in jail.

A miserable Joseph laments his situation ("Close Every Door"), but things look up when two prisoners, both former servants of the Pharaoh, are put in his cell. Joseph interprets their strange dreams and predicts the Butler will return to Pharaoh’s service, while the Baker will be executed. On hearing his prophecies, the other prisoners encourage Joseph to follow his own dreams ("Go, Go, Go Joseph").

 

Act II

The Narrator opens the second act with news that there’s a glimmer of light for Joseph in jail: Pharaoh himself had a run of crazy dreams and nobody can interpret them (“Pharaoh Story”). Pharaoh’s (now freed) Butler tells him of Joseph’s skills deciphering dreams ("Poor, Poor Pharaoh"). Pharaoh has Joseph brought to him and describes his dream involving seven fat cows, seven skinny cows and seven healthy ears of corn and seven dead ears of corn ("Song of the King").

Joseph deduces that there will be seven plentiful years of crops followed by seven years of famine ("Pharaoh's Dreams Explained"). Impressed with what he hears, Pharaoh puts Joseph in charge of preparations for the famine and the former slave becomes the second most powerful man in Egypt, Pharaoh’s right-hand man ("Stone the Crows").

Meanwhile, Joseph’s family back home is struggling due to the famine, with his brothers regretting what they did to him and how they lied to their father ("Those Canaan Days"). Hearing that Egypt still has food, they travel there to beg for supplies ("The Brothers Come to Egypt").

In Egypt, the brothers request food from Joseph, not realizing who he is ("Grovel, Grovel"). Joseph gives them sacks of food, but puts a golden cup in the one belonging to Benjamin, his youngest brother, whom he has never met. When the brothers attempt to depart, Joseph stops them, accusing them of theft. Each brother empties his sack ("Who's the Thief?”) and when the cup is found in Benjamin’s sack Joseph accuses him of stealing. The other brothers beg Joseph to take them prisoner instead and let Benjamin go free ("Benjamin Calypso").

Joseph sees that his brothers have changed and reveals who he really is ("Joseph All the Time"). Joseph sends for his father and the pair are reunited ("Jacob in Egypt"). Joseph wears his colored coat again ("Any Dream Will Do”/ “Close Every Door”).

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