A homage to the 2001 romantic comedy, Legally Blonde: The Musical, staged by the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (RCS), is a musical extravaganza that stays true to the original story. The music score that accompanies the production is based on the original Broadway musical. However, its efforts to remain true to the film result in an extremely long, slightly rambling show that seems to put quantity above quality.
The musical follows the journey of UCLA sorority president Elle Woods’ move to the East Coast to follow her ex-boyfriend to Harvard Law School. Because he dumps her for not being “serious”, Elle decides to win him back by gaining admission to Harvard Law. Through the course of the musical, Elle discovers her passion for the legal profession and figures out she doesn’t need Warren in her life.
Despite the unfortunate show time set (the musical begins at 10 AM!), Legally Blonde draws in a sizeable crowd. Starting strong with the upbeat number ‘Omigod you guys’, the energy and vivacious spirit of the cast is evident and holds out throughout the show. The perfect casting of Elle and Paulette in particular captures the essence of the original characters and holds up the musical. Paulette’s Ireland number and the iconic ‘Bend and Snap’ scene are the highlights of the musical, going down well with the crowd.
The main pitfall for Legally Blonde: The Musical is the poor production quality. The costumes are lacklustre and fail to captivate. The singing and dance moves while synchronized come across mediocre at times. The transitions between scenes and the movement of props are not as smooth as one would hope. The musical runs for two and a half hours, with a 10-minute interval break in between, which is longer than the movie itself. Certain scenes could be cut out for a tighter, smoother production that still captures the essence of the plot.
The minor changes made to the original script to reflect modern slang and themes is noteworthy, however, and adds unexpected humour to the production. The second-half of the musical, following the interval, is when the musical truly kicks off and the cast appears more comfortable in their characters.
Ultimately, Legally Blonde: The Musical is great for fans of the original movie that are looking to spend their morning entertained.
Legally Blonde: The Musical is on at the Assembly Rooms – The Music Hall
At 10:00 until 25th August (excluding 19th)
Book tickets here
Image: Robert McFadzean/Royal Conservatoire of Scotland