Sunday, 19 August 2012

Legally Blonde Review - Cardiff

I'm not totally sure whether Faye's injury is keeping her out of the show, hopefully she'll tweet and let us know how she's doing soon. I was planning on seeing LB myself this week but I probably wont bother if Faye is missing because Legally Blonde doesn't really work without Elle Woods and there is only one Elle Woods for me.

As soon as I hear anything I'll let you know. In the meantime enjoy this review written by Tom Bevan who saw the show in Cardiff last Wednesday.

Legally Blonde Review
Wales Millenium Centre, Cardiff

By Tom Bevan

Exam results are out, the Olympic bubble has burst and the heavens have re-opened; the next couple of weeks could heavily disappoint. Thank goodness then for the programmers at the Millenium Centre who have booked the most upbeat show on the circuit at a time when we could all do with an extra jolt of sunshine.

Legally Blonde: The Musical shot its way to the Olivier Award for Best New Musical in 2011 and is now touring the UK for the first time with the star-led cast of Gareth Gates, Faye Brooks and Jennifer Ellison (who was replaced by an understudy last night). Adapted from the hit 2001 film, the show is bright, tight and camper than camp with its slick choreography, fantastic melodies and reassuringly happy ending.

Having followed driven boyfriend Warner, Gareth Gates, to Harvard and danced her way into its prestigious Law School, blonde stereotype Elle Woods finds herself in a world without cheerleaders or costume parties and looks lost in pink. But with help from heartbroken hairdresser Paulette, played assuredly by said understudy Rhona McGregor, and encouraged by friendly fellow student Emmet, she ends up in a highly sought after internship.

Played with heart and humour by Faye Brookes, Elle defies her own and others’ doubts to excel in the court room and choose the right man, proving that appearances really aren’t everything. Brookes is a name to look out for and with Bill Kenwright behind her, she’ll go far.

From punchy opener Omigod You Guys right through to finale Find My Way, the show is fast paced and full of big musical numbers that, although sometimes felt over-done, defied damp spirits with contagious joy. Whilst Gareth Gates built on his recent stage success such as his role as Marius in Les Miserables, it was Welshman Iwan Lewis who charmed the WMC crowd the most as the geek-come-hero Emett. A self reflection on how he got to Harvard, Chip on My Shoulder gave Lewis a chance to own the limelight in his home country’s finest venue and he did so with aplomb.

Escapism at its most sparkly, the show packed in a rainbow of costumes and several highly complex dance routines that left you slightly dazed. Especially impressive was the use of skipping ropes in an onstage fitness video, whilst two dogs gave the performance a cute and cuddly dimension. Cue “aahhss” a plenty.

With large helpings of glitter, gossip and topless male models, not to mention programme notes from Miranda Hart, this has to be the girly night out of the year. A musical chick-flick well worth a watch even if, you too, are male.

There is still plenty of time to catch this superb show in Cardiff because it runs until next Saturday 25th August. Don't miss out, book now!


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