Can you believe it’s been five months?
Come January 27, the girls of Delta Nu will harmonise “oh my god you guys!” for the final time, and the curtain of the Lyric will ring down on the final performance of Legally Blonde in Sydney.
It’s a show, I’ll admit, I feel a certain affinity to, because I have been there since the very beginning: from the first casting announcements through the final press call, the very first preview, opening night and now closing night…
The last show I saw three times was Chicago! Truly, I didn’t see it coming.
While Legally Blonde the movie is a renowned commodity – the musical kicks it up a notch. On stage Elle Woods becomes one of the most physical characters written for this generation of musical theatre. It truly does the Australian production, its cast and crew, a special brand of credit that they have created such a masterful new incarnation of this infamously demanding show.
As Elle Woods, Lucy Durack sparkles. As the show heads out of Sydney, Durack’s name is set to adorn the marquees of the Lyric at QPAC (Brisbane) and then the Princess Theatre (Melbourne). With this role, Ms Durack has unquestionably marked a place for herself as one of the most bankable young actresses in the Australian music theatre industry today.
But this is no simple star vehicle. The Australian cast are nothing short of remarkable in this production. And while we frequently have the opportunity to brag about the world class productions staged in Australian theatres – Legally Blonde is currently our most dazzling. David Harris, as always, tears up the stage as leading man Emmett. Cameron Daddo is sleazetastic as Professor Callahan, while Hellen Dallimore sings up a sublime storm as Ireland-obsessed Paulette. And what spectacular new discoveries have been made in Erika Heynatz and Ali Calder! Just wait for the Helpmann nominations later this year! But it cannot be said that even a single member of the ensemble cast is less than sublime in this show.
This leads to one taunting question: why is the show leaving now?
Honestly, I can only say that I have never seen a more spectacular show with a more sluggardly word of mouth! Critics across the broadsheets, the theatre websites, the mags, the tv stations, has unanimously proclaimed Legally Blonde a triumph – great material, great cast, great production, AND a great night out! Tickets have moved, and while the house has not been empty, the show has not gone on to become the Wicked–esque sensation I would have expected. As to why – I honestly don’t know. All that can be said is that Sydney has had a rare gem these last five months as those who have seen it can ably attest.
Sydney: the show closes on Sunday, January 27 – last chance to be Legally Blonde, grab it while you can!
Tickets for the Brisbane and Melbourne seasons are available now at www.legallyblonde.com.au