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Legally Blonde The Musical is a Delightful Reimagining for a New Generation

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Big League’s 2022-2023 tour of ‘Legally Blonde The Musical’ comes to an end this month at West Palm Beach’s Kravis Center with its last performance on the 21st. You won’t want to miss this high energy, fast-paced musical comedy.

May 16th, 2023

by Keren Young

Big League delivers incredible star power from its cast members that is easily comparable to any Broadway production. Hannah Bonnett (Off Broadway’s Wizard of Oz) offers a naive yet witty Elle Woods who captivates the audience every second she is on stage (which is always). Her vocal talent is undeniable as she sings out with incredible control and power while dancing (in stilettos I might add). By the time the show-stopping number “What You Want” is complete, you will have fallen head over pink Jimmy Choo heals in love with her. Bonnet’s fellow performers are equally captivating. James Oblak (Christmas Wonderland) playing Warner was a perfectly pompous prep boy with riffs for days, and White playing Emmet mastered that rare combination of scruffy, yet charming. White’s chemistry with Bonnett was evident and particularly palpable during the heart-breaking number “Legally Blonde,” which beautifully drives home the themes of the show.

A big honorable mention goes to Ashley Morton (Into The Woods) playing the role of Paulette for her incredible pipes and even more incredible Bend and Snap. Morton, in tandem with the cast playing Margot, Serena and Pilar U/S, served as the perfect possie that any girl would be lucky to have in their corner. The Delta Nu’s are a difficult group to convey, and are often portrayed as ditzy cheerleaders, which can easily become irksome. However, this Delta Nu star trio and their ensemble deliver dynamic and energetic performances that are clearly driven from their love of sisterhood, not just lip gloss.

No matter how many times you have seen the Legally Blonde movie or the musical, this production does offer several interesting twists that you might not have expected. If you associate Legally Blonde with the early 2000’s, think again. This production swaps out low-rise jeans and halter tops for joggers and metallic crop tops. You guessed it, the production is entirely Gen Z inspired. The set is very minimal, making the majority of the scene change work to be done by various screens. Initially, I was not a fan, but it did start to grow on me as it tied into this new digitally driven generation. They were able to display texts, facetimes and social media posts throughout the show in addition to transitioning quickly from one location to the next. They also displayed about half of the opening number of Act 2 on the screens, imitating tick tock posts, rather than in person. The number “Whipped into Shape” was very well executed and if you have never seen the musical, I am sure you would be very happy with it. However, to those in the know, this number famously brings the house down, but unfortunately this production just didn’t do that simply because so much of it was not live.

As a millennial who grew up watching Legally Blonde, I left the production unsure of how I felt about the updates. I missed the elements of nostalgia that one looks forward to when watching a reimagining of a childhood movie. I am certain the generation below me would not feel the same, which is all part of the magic of theatre; every individual experience will be slightly different and that’s okay. At the end of the day, I do not feel these changes made me enjoy the show any less, in fact, it brought me something I have never seen before, which is always a welcomed treat.

I will say there is one aspect of the show that fell a bit short for me. The Costumes. Throughout the performance, I felt I was given Broadway talent with some community theatre costume moments. Elle Woods is an icon of beauty and fashion and should always be the prettiest girl in the room, but I couldn’t help feeling that Bonnet’s blonde wig looked tired and worn, and some of her costumes lacked finesse. Furthermore, a few exposed zippers, velcros and straps from undergarments were seen. Although, these costume moments did not stop Bonnet from being stunning or from owning the stage with confidence, I couldn’t help, but feel she deserved a proper Elle Woods makeover.

All things said and done; Big League did an amazing job with a notoriously difficult show. The choreography by Bob Richard was out of this world, making you want to jump around the theatre with joy. It perfectly married the modern vision of the show with the original source material. The musical score by Okefe and Benjamin speaks for itself. I guarantee you will walk away with several songs running laps in your brain. Do not miss this standout performance. It was a night to remember. And don’t forget to dress the part! The audience was full of Elle Woods inspired looks from men and women alike, reminding us that “Whoever said orange is the new pink was seriously disturbed.” – Elle Woods

For more information on the production visit: Legally Blonde The Musical | Kravis Center for the Performing Arts

  • Kaelee Albritton as Brooke and the cast of Legally Blonde – The Musical. Photo by Drager Creative.

  • The cast of Legally Blonde – The Musical. Photo by Drager Creative.

  • Ashley Morton as Paulette and Matthew Dean Hollis as Kyle in Legally Blonde – The Musical. Photo by Drager Creative.

  • The cast of Legally Blonde – The Musical. Photo by Drager Creative

  • James Oblak as Warner and Hannah Bonnett as Elle Woods in Legally Blonde – The Musical. Photo by Drager Creative.

  • Hannah Bonnett as Elle Woods in Legally Blonde – The Musical. Photo by Drager Creative.

  • The cast of Legally Blonde – The Musical. Photo by Drager Creative.

  • Jesse Lynn Harte as Margot, Taylor Lloyd as Serena, and Rory Furey-King in Legally Blonde – The Musical. Photo by Drager Creative.

  • Aathaven Tharmarajah as Emmett and the cast of Legally Blonde – The Musical. Photo by Drager Creative.

  • Hannah Bonnett as Elle Woods and the cast of Legally Blonde – The Musical. Photo by Drager Creative.

  • The cast of Legally Blonde – The Musical. Photo by Drager Creative.

  • Hannah Bonnett as Elle Woods in Legally Blonde – The Musical. Photo by Drager Creative.

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