Audiences will take a comedic trip from Southern California to Harvard Law School — all without leaving the Woodstock Opera House — during TownSquare Players’ production of “Legally Blonde — The Musical.”
The musical version of the hit motion picture tells the story of Elle Woods, a sorority girl who follows her ex-boyfriend all the way to Harvard in hopes of winning him back, only to learn she has more legal savvy than anyone expected.
The story is a testament to girl power, but “it’s a very empowering piece for all,” according to artistic director Jeff Cook.
Based on the novel by Amanda Brown, MGM brought “Legally Blonde” to the big screen as a movie starring Reese Witherspoon in 2001. With a book by Heather Hack and music and lyrics by Laurence O’Keefe and Nell Benjamin, “Legally Blonde — The Musical” first was staged in 2007. There are fans of each, but Cook said his cast and crew have worked really hard to create something visually appealing and with high energy that all fans can relate to.
“The musical captures all the classic moments from the movie and adds spectacular dance numbers,” Cook said.
He said all the favorite characters are in the production – 28 in all – along with two dogs. It so happens that the stage manager, Spencer White, is a veterinarian who practices at the Animal Hospital of Woodstock. He was able to hook up Cook with an adorable chihuahua to play Elle’s famous dog, Bruiser, as well as another larger dog to play Rufus.
Cook cast Deanna Golema, Huntley, in the role of Elle Woods, the perky, pink, passionate Valley Girl-turned-law student who rises above each setback along her journey to succeed, finding herself along the way.
“She perfectly fit what you want to see in this role,” said Cook. In addition, he said, “She’s a legitimate triple threat: she sings, dances and acts.”
Cook said he knew in the beginning the production would hinge on whomever they cast as Elle, but adds that the ensemble is just as strong.
“Everybody is giving 150 percent,” he said.
Cook said he and his production team have found a niche in producing shows that are adapted from movies. In September 2015, he directed “Young Frankenstein” for the Woodstock Musical Theatre Company.
“Our goal is to go bigger and better,” he said.
“Legally Blonde — The Musical,” comes to the Opera House, 121 Van Buren St., Fridays through Sundays, March 3 to 19.