Legally Blonde, a musical now running at the Savoy Theatre in London, is based on the hit movie starring Reese Witherspoon as a dumb blonde who becomes a savvy, successful lawyer.
Ripe for musical treatment and a successful one? I’ll say. Although the initial premise is about as far from feminism as you can find – Elle Woods gets into Harvard Law School to chase after her heel of an ex-boyfriend, Warner Huntingdon III – we get to an amusing and satisfying by way of a few hummable tunes, two very cute doggies, and a psycho hairdresser lusting after a parcel delivery boy!
In the lead as Elle is Carley Stenson, who looks and sounds the part (she’s a Hollyoaks graduate), while support comes from Stephen Ashfield as nice student Emmett, Ben Freeman (ex-Emmerdale) as Warner, Peter Davison in another musical role as Professor Callahan – channelling Jolson in his solo number, Natalie Casey as Paulette the hairdresser, Tricia Adele-Turner as Vivienne, and (on the night we went) Jane McMurtrie as Brooke, the keep fit expert and maybe murderess.
Legally Blonde is big, boisterous and fun, and although it is undemanding fare not requiring any thought from the spectator, it is hard not to leave without a smile on your face.