ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
Riverside Theatre, led by Producing Artistic Director/CEO Allen D. Cornell and Managing Director/COO Jon R. Moses, present the effervescent award-winning musical, Legally Blonde. Sponsored by The O’Haire Group-Merrill Lynch Wealth Management and Riverside Theatre’s Patron Producers Group, Legally Blonde performs on the Stark Stage from April 16 – May 5, 2019. Legally Blonde is a co-production between Riverside Theatre and the Walnut Street Theatre in Philadelphia.
Fabulously fun and filled with flashy song-and-dance numbers, Legally Blonde follows the exploits of a vivacious sorority girl, Elle Woods, and her plans to follow her Ivy League ex-boyfriend to Harvard Law School. Determined to get him back, she charms her way into the prestigious law school. While there, she ends up teaching the intellectual elite a thing or two by winning a difficult case with her unique expertise and cheery outlook. Along the way, Elle quickly realizes her potential and finds true love.
Originally a novel written by Amanda Brown, Legally Blonde was based on Ms. Brown’s experiences when attending Stanford Law School in the 1990’s. Although women had made strides, equality was not universal. Many stereotypes remained in society, including who belonged in elite schools, and rigid norms about appearance, style and class.
In 2001, a movie version, starring Reese Witherspoon, was released and became an instant success earning over $100 million. A sequel, Legally Blonde 2, was just as successful when it played in movie theaters in 2003. The musical version of the film opened on Broadway in April 2007 and received seven Tony® Award nominations including “Best Musical.” The Broadway production closed in October 2008. A London production opened in January 2010 and was a bigger success running until April 2012 and winning three Laurence Olivier Awards including “Best New Musical.”
The story follows Elle Woods, a popular sorority president and cheerleader studying fashion and design at UCLA. She hopes to marry her classmate Warner Huntington III, but he breaks up with her, explaining that he plans to go to Harvard Law School and pursue a career as a politician. Elle is “too blonde” and “not serious enough” for him. Crushed, Elle plans to win Warner back by following him East and gains acceptance at Harvard Law by way of a very unique submission.
While Warner’s new girlfriend, Vivienne, and her other classmates mock her stylish clothes and “dumb blonde” hair, she befriends teaching assistant Emmett Forest who encourages her to challenge Warner to a debate in class, which she does and wins.
Earning a criminal trial internship on a team that includes Emmett, Warner, and Vivienne, Elle catches the attention of the dubious Professor Callahan. Professor Callahan and the team represent a fitness guru, Brooke, accused of murdering her billionaire husband. Elle discovers a fatal flaw in the main accuser’s testimony, reveals the actual murderer, and wins the case.
Three years later, Elle has graduated as valedictorian of her class, Warner has dropped out of school, Vivienne is preparing to join the Peace Corps, Professor Callahan is defeated in his run for Governor and Elle proposes to Emmett, who readily accepts.
Riverside’s production of Legally Blonde is directed and choreographed by Richard Stafford and stars Kathryn Brunner (Elle Woods), Elliott Styles (Emmett Forrest), Rebecca Robbins (Paulette), Paul Schoeffler (Professor Callahan), Sean Thompson (Warner Huntington III), Lindsey Bliven (Vivienne Kensington), Sara Brophy (Brooke), Adena Ershow (Margot), Lina Lee (Pilar), and Jenna Pinchbeck (Enid).
The ensemble cast includes: Anthony Avino, Nicholas Karl Brown, Caroline Chisholm, Chali Cooke, Billy D. Hart, Jesse Jones, Katy Kauffman, Parker Krug, Scott Langdon, Adam Mandala, Kathryn Miller, Owen Pelish, Kristyn Pope, Audrey Simmons, and Rochelle Scudder.
The production crew includes: Anne Shuttlesworth (Music Director), Peter Barbieri (Scenic Designer), Kurt Alger (Costume Designer), Dave Bova (Wig Designer), Jack Mehler (Lighting Designer), Craig Beyrooti (Sound Designer), Rita Sirianni (Casting), Amy M. Bertacini (Production Stage Manager), and Doug Lamb and Julianne Menassian (Assistant Stage Managers).
Legally Blonde performs April 16 – May 5, 2019 on the Stark Stage at Riverside Theatre. Tickets start at $35. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Box Office at 772-231-6990 or online at http://www.riversidetheatre.com.
Performances are Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays at 7:30pm; Fridays, and Saturdays at 8pm; with matinees on Wednesdays, select Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays at 2pm.
April 16, 17, 18, 24, 25, 30, May 1 & 2 @ 7:30pm
April 17, 20, 21, 24, 25, 27, 28, May 1, 4 & 5 @ 2pm
April 19, 20, 26, 27, May 3 & 4 @ 8pm
Legally Blonde is the final show of the 18-19 Season.