Legally Blonde – New Wimbledon Theatre until 23rd June then Touring
★★★★★ ‘Vibrant, Playful and just great Fun’
Review by Caroline Hanks-Farmer
Ok so I have a confession to make…..I’ve never seen Legally Blonde. Not just the show but also I’ve only seen glimpses of the film? That said we at CTP have previously reviewed it twice on this tour, and from what I’ve gleaned from my reviewers it’s matured each time. So I figured it was about time I saw for myself what all the fuss was about?
Elle (Lucie Jones) is from Malibu – president of her UCLA sorority, devoted to her chihuahua Bruiser and the colour pink and utterly in love with boyfriend Warner Huntington III (Liam Doyle). When against all odds she crosses the country to follow her love to Harvard Law School, she defies everyone’s expectations by learning to use her people and hair care skills, newfound knack for law and rosy wardrobe for good.
This production is pink, yes very pink! Its cast matches the brightness with their energy, effervescent infectious zest and apparent love for the production. Particular highlights included Omigod You Guys, Bend and Snap and Gay or European – a hilarious scene set in the court room. This well-known tale, full of both feel-good moments and rom-com clichés, seems to adapt well to the stage. Nell Benjamin and Laurence O’Keeffe’s lyrics and music are clever and irresistibly catchy. Of Anthony Williams and Dean Street’s choreography it must be said that it is very typically musical theatre, and works perfectly.
Lucie Jones, as Elle has a beautiful voice and acted the role brilliantly. Jones performed with both humour and emotion. She had excellent chemistry with David Barrett as Emmett Forrest, who was both loveable and funny. Barrett made you will him on, while Liam Doyle was suitably slimy and chauvinistic as Warner Huntington III, realising all too late how ‘serious(ly)’ right Elle would have been for him. As Professor Callahan, Bill Ward, delivered us his best “baddie” and was heartily rewarded, even receiving a few boo’s when taking his bows.
Rita Simons as beautician and Elle’s best friend Paulette, at times for me completely stole the limelight in her major scenes. Her on point accent and precision comic timing, along with her power house voice was incredible. Even when her dog Rufus didn’t quite want to act – her improvisation showed playful skill. Simons, rightly, received huge applause at the end of the show.
In summary this is a great show for anyone who has seen the film and even people who haven’t. It is colourful, full of energy and people, who clearly love performing it. It’s all American full on sparkle. Put simply its vibrant, playful and just great fun – Omigod you guys have to see it when it visits a town near you or at New Wimbledon Theatre until 23rd June.