Saturday, 22 September 2012

Holiday, Birthday & A Manchester Party

Well I'm back from my holiday and still recovering from the shock of a completely dry week in Cornwall. Maybe the only one they've had this year?

As you may recall from my last post I aged another year yesterday and although I'm not sure it was aimed at me, it was at least a happy coincidence that Faye tweeted the following on my big day.

@ElleWoodsOnTour Well Happy Birthday my cherub! Hope it was a good'n! 

While I've been away Faye and the LB crew have continued wowing audiences in Manchester and they are promising to go out with a bang when they take to the Opera House stage for the final time today.

@ElleWoodsOnTour Last day in Manchester! It’s been the best 2 weeks and I've loved every second of it... Bring on Wimbledon LB! :) x 

Wimbledon has come round far too quick. I can't believe the tour ends in just 2 weeks time :(

I've found another great review written by Rebecca Cohen who saw the show in Manchester. I haven't mentioned the B word myself - Broadway - because it would cost me a fortune to keep travelling across the pond to see Faye work her magic but there is no doubt she has the talent to perform there and Rebecca clearly agrees.

Legally Blonde Review 
Manchester, Manchester Opera House - September 2012 

Stereotypically speaking, blondes are considered to be kooky, dizzy and a little vanity mad.
Website after website is filled with jokes about their confusion and lack of intelligence, and the concept of a “dumb blonde” has even been the topic of academic research.

Initially, it may seem that Elle Woods fits into that category perfectly — she’s pretty, she’s obsessed with pink, and her outfit choice is perhaps one of the most important decisions of her day.

Made famous by American actress Reese Wetherspoon, Miss Woods is of course the leading lady of Legally Blonde, the woman who proves that style doesn’t always have to come without substance. And once again, her story is brought to the stage in musical form, but this time round it’s bigger and better than ever.

 Legally Blonde The Musical has made a triumphant return to Manchester, bringing with it all the elements that worked before, and a lot more besides.

While this production undoubtedly made me smile in its previous visit to the Opera House, there were definite factors that were in need of improvement. The opening got off to a slow start, some of the musical numbers lacked “oomph”, and sometimes the cheesy Americanisation just didn’t lie right.

Now, don’t get me wrong, this show should still be taken at face value. The plot is hardly a Shakespearian tragedy, and the characters and songs can at times border on the ridiculous — and yet somehow it absolutely works.

It is difficult to believe that Faye Brookes played the protagonist throughout the last tour, but wonderful to see just how much she has developed and grown in the part. Her comedic timing is second to none, her voice at times breathtaking, and her facial expressions an absolute treat. There is no doubt that this young actress is a star, and it is almost guaranteed that she has a very fruitful West End, if not Broadway, career ahead of her. 

Also adding to the production are new cast members Gareth Gates and Jennifer Ellison, who do a fantastic job in their roles of Warner Huntington the Third and Paulette Buonufonte. Guildford graduate Iwan Lewis is equally impressive as Elle’s love interest Emmett Forrest, and Tracey Penn is particularly engaging as the snobby Vivienne Kensington.

On the whole, the ensemble deliver an array of uplifting and feel-good numbers, namely “So Much Better”, “Bend and Snap” and “There! Right There!”, thoroughly deserving the standing ovation that they received.

A fun and frivolous production that will have you bending and snapping in no time. “Ohmigod you guys”, you have like sooo totally got to go.

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