Legally Blonde The Musical | Bord Gais Energy Theatre
Star Rating: 5/5
Review By: David O'Shaughnessy
Based on the 2001 movie of the same name, Legally Blonde The Musical follows the plot of Elle Woods almost exactly. The aforementioned Miss Woods (comma Elle) is a sorority girl in sunny California who follows her ex-boyfriend to Harvard Law School to prove her love and smarts, and in the process learns about overcoming perceptions and being true to yourself. Admittedly, that sounds a bit light and pandering, but by the time the final curtain falls in the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre you'll be so enamoured with the show that you'll be baffled at how you could have ever doubted it.
In terms of production, this touring company features some peculiar casting in the form of former X Factor contestants Ray Quinn and Niki Evans, however any reservations about their contribution to the show are completely unfounded as they tackle the roles of Warner and Paulette with aplomb and solid vocals.
However, as in the film, it's Elle Woods who is the star. Faye Brookes is simply astounding, both in stamina and performance, featuring in every scene and number and never faltering once. Her portrayal of Elle will make any memory of Reese Witherspoon disappear in an instant, making the character far more sympathetic and three-dimensional. Also, there are live dogs on stage. That's dogs, plural. That doesn't sound like a big deal, but trust me, it is.
The show itself is relentless and ridiculous in the absolute best sense. While seemingly frivolous, Legally Blonde does have an underlying message of overcoming odds through hard work and tenacity and staying true to yourself, which is hardly a bad ideal to be instilling in the flocks of young girls and women who will make up the majority of the audience. Which they shouldn't, because this show is immediately accessible for all sexes and ages. And there is a fantastically entertaining Irish sub-plot that will have you on your feet and cheering for more.
The set does miss some of the larger physical pieces that make for more of a spectacle, however these are small things that are forgivable for a touring production and barely detract from the overall staging. Transitions and pacing are seamless and flawless, truly highlighting the professional edge that this company has. And with the West End production finished as of last week, this is your last chance to see the show for the foreseeable future, and missing it would be truly regrettable for any musical theatre fan.
In life, blondes are said to have fun, but on stage they definitely do. And so will you.
Legally Blonde The Musical runs in The Bord Gáis Energy Theatre Tuesday April 10th to Saturday April 21st 2012. Tickets priced from €20 available from usual outlets.
Check out our interview with Niki Evans here.
Story by EI Team | 09:00 | Wednesday 11th April 2012 | Theatre
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