Review - Legally Blonde (Leicester Curve)

Legally Blonde, the ever popular musical, has burst onto the Leicester Curve's stage in a furore of glorious pinkness. The show, based on the 2001 film of the same name, tells the story of Malibu sorority girl Elle Woods, who follows her preppy ex boyfriend Warner Huntington III to Harvard Law School in order to try and win him back, but once she arrives she finds a new love...justice! This feel good show was first seen on the West End in 2009, but the production in Leicester (directed by Nikolai Foster) is completely new, but just as brilliant.
Photo credit - Catherine Ashmore
In the past, Legally Blonde has received criticism from some for it's lightweight story and stereotypical characters, but while some of the show's themes do seem a little dated in 2016, its overarching moral that 'being true to yourself never goes out of style' is as relevant today as ever.

Lucie Jones is outstanding in the hugely demanding role of ditzy yet tenacious Elle, a character who is hardly off stage for the whole show. She has a fantastic voice and a winsome charm, and these elements combined make her an absolutely wonderful leading lady. Playing opposite Jones in the role of Emmett Forrest, Jon Robyns is equally impressive, particularly in his act 1 number, Chip On My Shoulder, which serves as a montage to show Elle's advancement as a law student. The song is excellently sung and provides some great character building moments, which help to drive the story forwards.
The songs of Legally Blonde (written by Laurence O'Keefe and Nell Benjamin) are invariably fantastic, and catchy numbers like the shows opening song Omigod You Guys, and the brilliantly heartening Legally Blonde Reprise really help to solidify the show's fun and upbeat tone. Interestingly, a few songs have been altered slightly or given a new twist. The most memorable and notable example of this is the new Bollywood twist on the rap section of What You Want. While the twist may be a little jarring to those familiar with the song, it is fun and refreshing, and showcases the vocal talents of Jamal Andreas, who also stands out both as part of the ensemble and in his roles as Padamadan and Nikos Argitakos.

Designer Matthew Wright's dazzling set design is pink perfection, and lighting design by Ben Cracknell is equally rosy. The overall effect is an almost overbearing pinkness which transports the audience to Elle Wood's world brilliantly. Although at times the stage does seem a little bare, and some moments (especially during big ensemble numbers) do get a little lost in the space, this is a small weakness in what is otherwise an unfalteringly enjoyable show. 

It is fantastic to see such a brilliant, high quality musical theatre production in the Midlands, proving that theatregoers don't have to travel all the way to London to see great theatre. Legally Blonde at the Leicester Curve features a top-notch cast and impressive creative team, and the result is magical. 

Legally Blonde is running at the Leicester Curve until Saturday 14th May before heading to the Deagu Opera House in South Korea where it will run from 25th June - 2nd July.