By Nickey Siegerman
Actors Creating Theatre (ACT) has been rehearsing their newest production, Legally Blonde.
Based off of the highly successful 2001 movie starring Reese Witherspoon, the musical follows the story of Elle Woods, president of Delta Nu sorority at UCLA, as she learns her boyfriend, Warner Huntington III, is breaking up with her because she isn’t “serious” enough for him. To get him back, Elle decides to follow Warner across the country and gets into Harvard Law School. Through her journey in her first year, she meets new friends that help her show everyone that just because you’re “legally blonde,” doesn’t mean you don’t belong.
Since casting on Oct. 7, ACT has spent months going over the sheet music, learning choreography from Abby Simon and Corrine Calderbank and learning each scene. Director Sarah Horvath and assistant director Abby Greco have worked hard to bring the cast and crew together after months of rehearsals. Each night was filled with stressful moments, hilarious mistakes, and tearful solos, but many goals were met before December rolled around.
Meghan Artley, a sophomore with several years of leads under her belt from high school, will be playing the lead role of Elle Woods. After having done ensemble for Spring Awakening and Cabaret her freshman year, she kicked this year off with her first ACT lead, blowing away the club with how well she’s managed to portray Elle. Artley described Elle as “intelligent, bubbly and determined. She has fire in her heart to find love.” Ever since being cast, she’s been working hard to fit those high heeled shoes and blonde wig to perfection.
ACT veteran Tim Dalton is playing Emmett Forrest. As a senior, Dalton has played several memorable and hilarious supporting characters in the past. He expressed his love for playing his character when interviewed. “Emmett’s a lot of fun to play because he has a whole lot of heart…his clumsiness, charisma, and strong will is something that I love to portray in his character. I am grateful that I have the opportunity to play a three- dimensional character, one that I can really get my teeth into and make my own.”
In addition to these amazing leads, there are several new members taking the ACT stage:
Meghan Artley as Elle Woods and Max Krug as Warner Huntington III, freshman Zoe Snyder as Vivienne Kensington, Layla Novoa as Paulette Bonafonte, Abby Simon as Brooke Wyndham, Jackson Gunelson as Professor Callahan and junior Max Krug as Warner Huntington III.
With the talented cast preparing for a show unlike anything ACT’s done before, with intense dance numbers, and vocally challenging songs, we talked to director Sarah Horvath. This is the second musical she directed at Kutztown, having a large amount of experience from years of directing plays at her church. Directing this show was different from directing Spring Awakening a year ago, a very controversial show with “R” rated content and difficult to perform due to the mature themes.
“The show itself is very different from last year’s Spring Awakening in terms of tone and style and message,” Horvath told us. “So it’s been an adventure getting not only myself, but my cast as well, to accept this change in how we approach our music and our lines and our choreography. Our cast this year is almost twice the size of last year’s and largely comprised of new members, which presents a whole new challenge, along with a lot of new talent and possibilities.”
With the incredible walls to climb in producing a show like this, Horvath reflected on the best parts of it.“[Legally Blonde] is so high-energy. Spring Awakening was very artistic and Heathers was a dark comedy, but Legally Blonde starts off with a burst of energy and keeps that excitement through the whole show, and I love that everybody puts that much of themselves into the show every night.”
With less than a week until Legally Blonde opens at KU, ticket sales have been skyrocketing. This may have to do with the fact that ACT has been given two nights this year to perform, Feb. 2 and 3 at 7 p.m. in the Schaeffer Auditorium.
If you don’t want to miss this show, buy your tickets from the MSU desk. They are priced at $10 for students and $12 for adults, and you’ll be screaming, “Omigod you guys!” with the cast of Legally Blonde.