Chicago Theatre Review
MARRIOTT THEATRE IS IN THE PINK
By: Gayle Kirshenbaum and Frank Meccia
“Oh my God,” two snaps for Marriott Theatres production of Legally Blonde. With a book by Heather Hach, music and lyrics by Laurence O’Keefe and Nell Benjamin this snappy lively show is fun from the beginning. And all of this begins with Marc Robin. From his flawless casting to direction to choreography this show is everything you can ask for in musical theatre. This is a great kickoff to the 2012 season.
Based on the 2001 movie which starred Reese Witherspoon it tells the story of party girl/homecoming queen Elle Woods. When her Harvard Law School boyfriend dumps her she decides to follow him to Harvard. This means getting accepted and serious. The movie became a Broadway sensation and went on to win several awards including the 2007 Drama Desk and a 2007 Outer Critics Circle Award.
Chelsea Packard shines as Elle. She makes the role her own with a rich voice, adorable smile and highly contagious personality. I have always enjoyed Christine Sherills work especially her comedic timing. This role is no exception. And Summer Naomi Smart jump ropes her way into our hearts as the falsely accused (I have a secret) Brooke Wyndham. Gene Weygandt is the professor you love to hate. Cole Burden has just the right amount of arrogance and David Larsen is sweet as Emmett, the man who finally wins Elle’s heart. One of the funnier moments in the show comes when they are trying to prove that the perfectly poised pool boy is gay. Scott Alan Jones works the audience while the question arises is he gay or European? While the men in the show keep the pace, Legally Blonde really belongs to the women. And least we forget Chico and Nellie who’s short time on the stage as Bruiser and Rufus garnished more ooh and ahs from the audience. I would be remiss if I did not say this ensemble cast works so well together, it reminds us of what it means to be part of a show.
I have always said if I had to pick one theatre to have a subscription to it would be Marriott. And after seeing Legally Blonde you will quickly see why pink will become your favorite color and Marriott one of your favorite theatres.
MARRIOTT THEATRE LINCOLNSHIRE
THROUGH APRIL 1