April 23, 2014 - By Meg Peters
Review Staff Writer
With more than 20 songs, 85 cast and crew members and one energetic blonde, students at Lake Orion High School present Legally Blonde The Musical for their spring production.
Students performed Wednesday, April 23 for senior citizens and students from the Learning Options Program, with other scheduled performances Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. sharp, and a 2 p.m. Sunday matinee at the high school auditorium. Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for students and seniors. For reservations call248-693-5420 ext. 6025.
Director Scott Finn selected Legally Blonde for its younger appeal, current feel and the musical's large number of lead female actresses.
"In many of the plays I've directed it's difficult to find strong, female roles, especially a play with multiple strong, female roles to support our large, female talent base," Finn said, his first year with the Lake Orion High School thespians. "So that was another reason we decided on this show."
The plot finds Elle, a Delta Nu, who decides to go to Harvard because her boyfriend Warren leaves her for a more serious life as a lawyer. Throughout the story Elle realizes she is not pursing Warner any longer, but developing her own self-confidence while turning into her own, passionate lawyer.
Vocal Music Director Bryce Thompson worked with the cast and 18-20 musicians comprising the pit orchestra to link the musical together.
All the songs have up to five voice parts in it, so Thompson was involved with layering each student's voice within the song while correlating it with the orchestra.
"There are five to seven key changes in the music, it's really challenging which makes it fun," Thompson said.
The musical begins with the first song "Oh My God You Guys" when Elle's sorority sisters predict boyfriend Warner will propose to Elle at dinner that night. The second song, "Serious" depicts the moment when Warren dumps Elle because she is not as intellectually stimulating as her male counterpart. From there the cast breaks into multiple other songs, including "What You Want", "Legally Blonde", and a crowd pleaser for anyone who has seen the film, the "Bend and Snap".
As Elle becomes a lawyer by the end of the movie, another key song breaks the scene called "European or Gay", as Elle ascertains the defendant's boyfriend may or may not be the crux to her case.
Finn said this was a perfect musical for students to perform at the end of the school year while seniors are preparing to head off to college or other adventures, and other students transition to their next grade levels.
"The show is all about growing into yourself and realizing you have far more potential than what other people sometimes give you credit for," Finn said, relating to the lead role Elle, played by Hayley Boggs.
Other lead roles in the musical are Vivienne Kensington played by Krista Fitzgerald, Elle's new love interest Emmett Forrest played by Owen Woityra, Elle's first boyfriend Warner Huntington played by Sam Wright and Paulette Buonufonte, Elle's cosmetology guru in the film, played by Maryann Roughton.
The scene changes over 20 times in the show, so be prepared for a lively, peppy production.
"They're funny, they have a lot of energy, and the sheer size of the cast is amazing," Finn said. "It's the largest musical and cast I have ever directed."