The following article is by Weston High School student Meredith Braunstein:
What do Harvard Law School, a UCLA sorority and a jail with jump roping inmates have in common? All are places that appear in Weston High School Theater Company’s production of Legally Blonde.
Legally Blonde is a musical based on the 2001 film starring Reese Witherspoon.
It is the story of Elle, a recent UCLA graduate and sorority queen, who enrolls in Harvard Law School to win back her boyfriend who recently broke up with her. She soon learns she has more legal skill than she thought and makes new friends as she wins a spot on a defense team for a high-profile murder case. Director John Minigan believes that in addition to being well known, Legally Blonde contains an important message.
“We’ve done relatively obscure musicals in the past three years, and we wanted a big name. Legally Blonde is about learning to get past limits you impose on yourself, and a majority of the songs approach these subjects, both comically and seriously,” Minigan said.
Cast members have enjoyed working on a show they consider entertaining, as
well as acting as characters that are bold and independent. Senior Crystal Evans, who plays the role of Elle, is excited to play a character she connects to.
“[Elle] is my dream role, and it’s great to have it come true. We are similar because she’s very happy about what life has to offer, and I have the same mentality.
Some people think that Legally Blonde is a simple show, but it’s really about people breaking norms and following their dreams. There’s never a dull moment,” Evans said.
Minigan believes that the upbeat mood of the show, in addition to the energy of the cast, is just one of the reasons audiences will enjoy themselves.
“The audience is going to have a blast. There’s a cast of 51 including the two dogs, and there’s a lot of singing and dancing. Some people think it’s a ‘girl show,’ but the guys in the show are having a lot of fun with it. We are one of the first schools to perform Legally Blonde,” Minigan said.
Legally Blonde cast members agree to having had a lot of fun in the rehearsal
process, but they also agree that they have learned from their characters what it means to look past appearances.
“[The rehearsal process] has been a blast. I’ve learned the story of Legally Blonde is not what people expect,” said senior Lee Condakes, who plays Professor Callahan,
Elle’s law school professor and head attorney in the murder trial. “I’ve learned about Callahan and what lies beyond the surface. Legally Blonde focuses on what’s on the inside of the individual.”
Actors new to Weston High Theater Company have grown to appreciate the challenges of getting into character, especially for those in major roles. Sophomore Alex Rougeau moved to Weston this year, and he portrays Emmet, a Harvard Law School graduate that befriends Elle.
“It’s difficult [playing Emmet] because there’s a lot about us that are opposite. He is very fast thinking and is always extremely motivated. It’s been a lot of pressure [having a large role,] but it’s helping me as an actor,” Rougeau said.
Members of the cast believe that the audience will like seeing characters they are both familiar with and can relate to.
“People are familiar with the film, so they can easily understand the show. Everyone in the audience has some character in the show they can relate to and see the journey the characters go on to find themselves,” said junior Mikayla Cramer, who plays Paulette, Elle’s hairdresser and friend.
Legally Blonde will be performed in the Weston High School Auditorium on Thursday, May 3; Friday, May 4; and Saturday, May 5; with all performances starting at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets will be on sale in the Weston High School box office, located next to the cafeteria entrance, starting Monday, April 23, and each school day thereafter through Friday, May 4. In-school sales will be from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. during the week of April 23, and 7:30 to 8 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. to noon during the week of April 30. Tickets will be on sale staring April 12 via ticketriver.com. Tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for students/senior citizens/ military personnel.