Istanbul’s Musical Breaks Record in Turkey

Haldun Dormen Theater in Istanbul’s Pangaltı district is preparing to host the classic West End musical ‘Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.’ Producer Nikki Dereboy says she is really pleased that the British Community Council is now working in collaboration with Speech Bubbles, an Istanbul-based theater group.

With a crash of drums and a flash of light, the British Community Council (BCC) and Speech Bubbles have joined forces to bring the classic West End musical “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” to Istanbul this summer.In a new staging of the record breaking 1990s London Palladium musical, Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s family classic is poised to open with its score of wall-to-wall hits including Close Every Door and Any Dream Will Do at the Haldun Dormen Theater in Istanbul’s Pangaltı istrict on May 30 through June 1.

The BCC has for many years brought together members of Istanbul’s British and international community to perform in the annual Christmas pantomime, a much-loved British theater tradition. Producer Nikki Dereboy said she is really pleased that the BCC is now working in collaboration with Speech Bubbles, an Istanbul-based theater group established by Tom Godfrey in 1982.

The group consists of both professional and amateur actors, singers and musicians from the Turkish and international communities, currently comprised of 11 nationalities.
Members voluntarily donate their time, services and expertise to present performances that raise money for local charities. This production is Speech Bubbles’ eighth musical in as many years. Director Sharon İnci said that all cast members are volunteers who love the stage. They come from a range of professions including teaching, business people, managers and consulate workers. Lisa Pursley, a primary school teacher is the narrator and has captured the essence of Joseph’s story with her impressive voice quality and convincing energy.

Joel Bastardi, also a teacher, is wonderful as the favorite son, Joseph. As his character’s luck quickly changes from awful to excellent, revealed a steady singing voice and an ease on stage that adds to the quality of his performance. These two actors are supported by strong, multi-talented casts who have all thoroughly enjoyed the experience of working together with Sharon in rehearsals. Wendy Aydın who designed and made the dazzling costumes for the show said she was helped by several local fabric companies and factories who kindly donated fabrics. The project is supported by Şişli Municipality and companies have provided help and financial support for the show, such as Coca Cola, Taps, Green House Books, Grapes and URSUS.

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