Bend and snap


Betsy Haft

“Legally Blonde” the musical premiered on Broadway, April 29, 2007.

Betsy Haft, Staff Writer

“Legally Blonde” showed recently at the Washington Pavilion and there were positive and negative aspects of the play. The movie “Legally Blonde” is about a girl who goes to law school in an attempt to win back her ex-boyfriend. Along the journey, she discovers her self-worth, makes new friends and moves on from her ex. The plot of the play is similar to the plot of the movie, with a few variations.
It is difficult to compare this rendition of “Legally Blonde” as a play to the movie considering the movie stars Reese Witherspoon as Elle Woods. Hannah Bonnet played Elle Woods in the play at the Washington Pavilion. Although she does a great job, no one can compete with Witherspoon. An odd focus of the play is Paulette Bonafonte wanting an Irish man to be her Irish dance partner. This was a poor attempt to differentiate from the movie but ended up giving a weird feeling to the overall show.
According to Sonja Niles, “[The] sequence [is] complete with a hunky Irish guy doing the “motherland” proud with his steps and kicks.”
The Irish dance is done in the play once Bonafonte acquires the Irish man she wants. Another difference is that in the movie when Elle Woods leaves her California college, she leaves her sorority sisters behind. In the play, however, her sisters are there for almost the whole show in her head. Not only are the sorority girls there but they are constantly twisting, twirling, grinding and shaking what their mama gave them. This type of dancing was an unexpected, unsolicited addition to the play. This felt unnecessary considering there were many parents with young children in the audience, expecting a child-friendly show, similar to the movie. To add to the atmosphere of a college-like cast, the costumes were brightly colored and very small. Whilst the costumes were accurate to a sorority girl, they looked ill-fitting on a few of the cast members, possibly due to incorrect measurements.
On a positive note, all the actors had amazing voices that carried throughout the whole theater. Kate Shindle, who played Vivian Kensington, had a spectacular voice and it really amped up the songs Shindle sang in. Another actor that truly added flavor and zest to the play is Taylor Lloyd, her bubbly-on-stage personality and flexibility adds an extra element of joy to the play. The best song in this play was definitely “There! Right There!,” this song is sung in the courtroom scene where they discover the pool boy is gay, and they are trying to decide if he is gay or European. It has the perfect mix of humor along with beautiful singing. This play is different from the movie in charming and upsetting ways, but overall, it was enjoyable and left catchy songs on my mind.