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Issue Date: September 2008

Legally Blonde: The Musical

Anne Hartman
Nov. 11-23
Palace Theatre

To get in the spirit for this bubbly ode to platinum locks, grab a heart-shaped notebook and pen to jot down a reminder:Legally Blonde: The Musicalis, like, coming to Cleveland!! Throw in a punchy “Omigod!” and you’re set to savor the Broadway hit.
Adapted from the novel,Legally Blonde and the better-known 2001 flick of the same name, the show takes the stage as a musical. Garnering seven Tony Award nominations since its opening last year, the musical is now hitting the road for a U.S. tour. It even spawned a MTV reality show in which girls from across the country duke it out to play the lead of Elle Woods, a fair-haired sorority princess who gets dumped by her boyfriend (the aspiring senator needs “less of a Marilyn and more of a Jackie”).

To prove her merits, Elle tags along when he goes to Harvard Law, never minding that she’s more versed in manicures than legal jargon. But in time, she manages to show her drably clad peers that she’s got brains under those blonde tresses — and can still pull off hot pink in a courtroom.

For fans of the Reese Witherspoon film, this version is infused with the same spunk. The script was tweaked, though, so Broadway songwriters could add girl-power ballads and peppy dance numbers. There’s “What You Want,” for instance, the song Elle performs in lieu of an admissions essay. Enlisting the help of a cheerleading squad, Elle attempts to shake and shimmy her way into the hearts of Harvard deans while showing off her courtroom smarts.

So go ahead — get decked out in pink and LOL with Elle, because she won’t object.

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