“Legally Blonde: The Musical” is taking center stage in Shannon Hall at the Memorial Union this weekend. I had the opportunity to see an early dress rehearsal performance and I was thoroughly impressed.
Almost 14 years ago, the beloved “Legally Blonde” was released in theaters and took America by storm. I loved the movie, the story and, obviously, the beautiful Reese Witherspoon. With small memories of the movie in the back of my head, I was ready for this fresh-faced musical by Laurence O’Keefe and Nell Benjamin to remind me of everything I loved about the original. As I was sitting in my seat waiting for the show to begin, I was fascinated with the simple yet effective set the crew put together.
Throughout the rest of the show, the props and backdrops were used wonderfully. Dropping a sign from the ceiling was very useful for making me feel a part of every scene. The stage overhangs around the pit, which the cast used many times, almost breaking the fourth wall, and I was captivated with the way Director Pam Kriger decided to use this space. The costumes, designed by Chrisa Lewandowski, were also fun and flirty, appropriately dressing the cast in current apparel and making the characters seem very modern. Being a college student watching actors play college kids was a semi-out-of-body experience, making me question, “Do I really act like that on campus? Do I dance that obnoxiously at parties?” Either way, this cast was very genuine in the way they acted.
Megan Hofschulte, the lead actress, is phenomenal. I have seen plenty of high school musicals, and have endured numerous off-key and sub-par solos done by 16 year olds, but this performance was next level. Hofschulte’s voice is radiant, dynamic and had quite a lot of personality. I was beaming every time she was onstage because she really won me over as an audience member. She was charming and natural and she perfectly fit this role. Her brunette-ness did not impede her ability to put on a wig and play a true blonde.
“Legally Blonde” runs through the rest of this week, with shows on Thursday, April 30 and Friday, May 1, at 7:30 p.m. and a matinee on Sunday, May 3, at 2:00 p.m.
Correction: The following sentence, "The stage overhangs around the pit, which the cast used many times, almost breaking the fourth wall, and I was captivated with the way Director Pam Kriger decided to use this space," formerly began with "there" instead of "the." The Daily Cardinal regrets this error.