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From Holland to Mamaroneck, Student Takes Stage

MAMARONECK, N.Y. -- Ties Jansen has wanted to be an actor and singer since he was a child living in the Netherlands. Friday, he debuted as Joseph in the Hommocks Middle School production of " Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat."

Jansen, 12, was born in the Netherlands and performed in several plays there, including "Christmas Carol" as Scrooge. But, he said, his school didn't put as much effort into those productions as he would have liked.

"Because I was way younger, they didn't take it seriously," said Jansen, whose family moved to Mamaroneck two years ago. "But here, it's way more professional."

The musical, which debuted on Broadway 30 years ago, opened in Mamaroneck on Thursday and runs through Saturday. While Jansen performed Friday night, Evan Macaluso, 11, who was also cast Joseph, will perform opening and closing night. Jansen said he wished he could perform one of those nights, Macaluso reminded him that most people will probably come to the Friday show.

Macaluso, a Larchmont resident, is excited to play the lead role, following in the footsteps of his older brother, who starred in the Hommocks production of "Willy Wonka" last year.

"Last year’s production of 'Willy Wonka' drew record level attendance and this year’s show is set to do the same," according to a school press release. "The students have poured hours of time and creative energy into making the Hommocks production an unforgettable night of fun for our community."

"Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" is directed by Tom Jordon and produced by Jill Karliner. The rock opera tells the biblical story of Jacob, his favored son Joseph and 11 brothers who betray him, through large ensemble numbers, featuring Western square dance to '50s Rock n' Roll to Calypso beach strumming.

"'Joseph' is an exciting and demanding show because full cast choral scenes dominate the production, meaning that the entire cast is on the stage for large portions of the show," Karliner said in the press release.     Tickets are $12 at the door. Patrons can also visit the show's website to donate tickets to families in need. Last year, donors made it possible for 60 community members to attend the show for free.

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