Reviewed by Cate Norris
When Elle’s proposal dinner ends in her being dumped, she is forced to re-evaluate her life. Recognising that her law student love Warner, wants a serious girl-the kind of girl that wears black even when nobody is dead, heartbroken Elle decides to make some drastic changes. Putting the partying on hold and submerging herself in study, Elle manages to secure herself a spot at Harvard Law School, planning to win back the love of her man. But Elle doesn’t exactly fit in at law school, she gets kicked out of class every day by Professor Callahan; her 4.0 average in fashion from UCLA isn’t the most obvious route into law, plus to make matters worse, Warner has moved on. Things seem like they can’t get any worse for Elle until she takes some good advice from new friends Paulette, who tells her to have faith in herself, and Emmett, who advises her to get a chip on her shoulder. Soon Elle is working hard, trusting her instincts and using her expertise to solve cases, resulting in her becoming a very popular student at Harvard Law School. This hilarious production deals with the underlying issues of stereotyping, the rewards of hard work and dedication. As well as friendship and trust. There is enough to give this story depth and meaning but this never once retracts from the comedy.
The show benefits from an incredible cast. Rita Simons, well known as the gorgeous Roxy from EastEnders, wowed as quirky Paulette. She maintained a great New York accent throughout and surprised with her powerful vocal, belting out her passion for the Emerald Isle.
Lucie Jones was exceptional as Elle, delivering a strong, no hold barred performance. She genuinely put her heart and soul into her performance and you couldn’t help but warm to her. She received a standing ovation from many which was well deserved. On top of this her vocals were incredible, I will say that her dancing was a little off, probably not a trained dancer but she held her own and her slight clumsiness actually added to the character.
Bill Ward is best known from Coronation Street and Emmerdale and had plenty of practice playing the bad guy in the former. He looked every bit the confident, sleazy, snake like lawyer as Professor Callahan. He reminded me of Gaston from Beauty and the Beast, he would be perfect for this role, I can just see him oozing arrogance.
David Barrett delighted as Emmett in a perfectly pitched performance. He didn’t come into focus for a little while and then like a dark horse came into the limelight as strong support for Elle. Never have I rooted so hard for ‘love’ to blossom. A mention has to be made to Liam Doyle, Laura Harrison and Nancy Hill for incredible vocals. My only complaint about this show is that there just weren’t enough dogs! Bruiser and Rufus were spectacular, however, and got huge ‘ahhs’ from the audience every time they came onto stage. I loved that they didn’t do what they were seemingly supposed to do this was extra funny. ‘They’ do say, never work with children or animals.
Legally Blonde is an outstanding piece of theatre which is well written, well cast and wonderfully funny. I would absolutely recommend this fabulously feel good, endorphin machine. It’s pure entertainment at its best – Go get your shot!
Tickets cost from £16 to £42.50 (booking fees may apply).
Legally Blonde is at the Theatre Royal in Nottingham from 14-19 May 2018, for more information or to book tickets visit www.trch.co.uk or call the box office on 0115 989 5555.
Theatre Royal & Royal Concert Hall, Theatre Square, Nottingham, NG1 5ND