Omigod You Guys: “Legally Blonde” Hits The Middle School Stage

The+programs+for+Legally+Blonde+Jr.%2C+featuring+the+artwork+of+a+seventh+grade+student%2C+were+distributed+to+audience+members+at+both+performances.
The programs for Legally Blonde Jr., featuring the artwork of a seventh grade student, were distributed to audience members at both performances.

The programs for Legally Blonde Jr., featuring the artwork of a seventh grade student, were distributed to audience members at both performances.

Lizzie Quinlivan

Lizzie Quinlivan

The programs for Legally Blonde Jr., featuring the artwork of a seventh grade student, were distributed to audience members at both performances.

Lizzie Quinlivan, Contributing Writer

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On April 5, 2018, the comedic musical “Legally Blonde” opened at Hingham Middle School, featuring the talents of more than 200 middle school students. Since the show is better known as a 2004 movie starring Reese Witherspoon, the musical version of “Legally Blonde” was unfamiliar to many students, making the production more challenging for its director, cast, and crew. Despite this challenge, the performance was nearly flawless.

Opening with the energetic  “Omigod You Guys!,” the Delta Nu sorority ensemble presented the crowd with a hysterical number about its president, Elle Woods, and her expected engagement. However, following the movie’s storyline, the excitement amongst the sorority sisters quickly decreases.

Warner, Elle’s longtime boyfriend, ends their relationship rather than proposing because he wants to have a relationship with someone more “serious” when he attends Harvard Law School. Elle, heartbroken, becomes determined to channel her energy into being accepted into the same school as Warner in order to prove her seriousness to him, hopefully renewing their relationship.

After dedicating hours to studying for and taking the LSAT, Elle finally reaches a score of 175 and applies to Harvard Law School. Although her credentials are strong, the board of admission initially scoffs at her image as a fashion merchandise major; however, he is persuaded to admit her by another board member who wishes to increase the diversity of Harvard’s prestigious student body.

Once being offered admission to Harvard, Elle becomes confident in her chances at winning Warner back. But Elle is stunned to discover that Warner has found a new girlfriend, Vivian Kensington, who is also an aspiring lawyer. On top of this, the Harvard academic course load is difficult for Elle and she contemplates dropping out of school. She is stopped from doing so by a fellow student, Emmett, who pushes her to work harder, leading to her academic success.

Midway through her freshman year, Elle earns an internship from her professor, a renowned lawyer. Along with her fellow students, Elle is assigned to help him defend Brooke Wyndham, a fitness video icon who is suspected of murdering her much-older husband.

But when her professor expresses inappropriate behavior towards Elle, Elle quickly decides to leave the case. However, based in part on the fact that both she and Elle were in the Delta Nu sorority, Brooke insists that Elle become her lawyer instead. Elle ends up cracking the case using her extensive knowledge of fashion and beauty.

Both nights of the performance received excellent responses from the crowds, getting multiple laughs and standing ovations. Junior Lily Deneen was in the audience on opening night, and she was “so impressed with the actors, crew, and orchestra.”

Noticing that the majority of the cast members were eighth graders, Deneen added, “With the addition of these students to the high school in the fall, the drama program will definitely benefit!”

Like Deneen, many high school students attended the performances, some to scout out the talent in the rising freshman, and some to reminisce about their own middle school performances.

Sophomore Ruthie Kerber, an active participant in the High School Drama Club, attended the performance on Friday night, recalling her experiences with working on the Spring musical in all three years of middle school. She comments, “Watching the show was very nostalgic. I feel like it was just yesterday that I was performing on this stage!” The turnout of high school students was great, and the show quickly sold out both nights.

The performance itself reflected the hard work of students, from the comedic sorority sisters returning for several numbers to the signature “Bend and Snap” dance move, which originated in the movie. Of course, one of the big crowd pleasers was the traditional appearance of the sixth grade students, who are grouped into one number of the show every year. This year the sixth grade chorus actually performed in two numbers, including the cast-wide number “What You Want,” and the title song “Legally Blonde.”

As usual, the cast, crew, and pit orchestra put together an engaging and fast-paced musical under the guidance of middle school teachers. This year was especially notable due to the fact that the group was challenged by introducing a musical new to most, as the musical version of “Legally Blonde” is not as well-known as past musicals such as “The Sound of Music” and “Guys and Dolls.” Nevertheless, Hingham Middle School executed a crowd-pleasing, fantastic musical that not only reflected the hard work of the middle schoolers involved, but introduced talent that will greatly benefit the high school drama program in the upcoming school years.

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