The musical comedy, which premiered on Broadway in April 2007, is based on the 2001 Hollywood film in which Reese Witherspoon played California sorority girl Elle Woods who follows her ex-boyfriend to Harvard Law School in an attempt to win him back.
Sheridan Smith stars as Elle, with ex-Blue pop star Duncan James as Elle’s heartbreaker college sweetheart Warner and Alex Gaumond as her new love interest Emmett (See News, 21 Jul 2009). Peter Davison is Harvard professor Callahan and Jill Halfpenny is Paulette, the hairdresser who Elle befriends.
The word 'ohmigod' was employed liberally as critics joined the “screaming fan girls” for a night of unashamed “frivolity”. Not all liked what they saw – more than one compared it unfavourably to Hairspray, while the Daily Mail's Quentin Letts required “a large squirt of interval vino” to get through. But others had a whale of a time, including the Daily Telegraph's Charles Spencer, who “really tried to hate this show”, but found that resistance was futile. The star of the show was undoubtedly Sheridan Smith, who managed to avoid being upstaged by her chihuahua to deliver a performance as Elle that several critics felt superior to Reese Witherspoon's in the original film.
- Theo Bosanquet & Kelly Ann Warden