Broadway

Legally Blonde the Musical began previews on Broadway on April 3rd 2007, before officially opening at the Palace Theatre on April 29th 2007.

The Broadway production closed on October 19th 2008.

Original Broadway Cast

Elle Woods – Laura Bell Bundy

Tony Award-nominated actress Laura Bell Bundy is best known for originating the role of Amber Von Tussle in Broadway’s Hairspray, before originating the role of Elle Woods in Legally Blonde the Musical. Further theatre credits include standby Glinda in Wicked, Gypsy and Rock of Ages. In 2010, she released her first single and has had three country albums since.

Emmett Forrest – Christian Borle

Tony Award and Drama Desk Award-winning actor Christian Borle made his Broadway debut in the 1998 production of Footloose. He has since appeared in shows both on and Off-Broadway, including Jesus Christ Superstar, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Monty Python’s Spamalot, Angels in America, On the Town, Peter and the Starcatcher, Something Rotten!, Falsettos and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

Warner Huntington III – Richard H. Blake

Richard H. Blake made his Broadway debut in the 1989 musical Prince of Central Park, which closed after only 4 performances. Since then, he has gone on to star in original Broadway musicals such as Teddy & Alice, Rent, Saturday Night Fever, Aida, Hairspray, Wicked, The Wedding Singer, Jersey Boys, Matilda the Musical and A Bronx Tale.

Paulette Bonafonté – Orfeh

Orfeh has had multiple records released, and married Legally Blonde co-star Andy Karl. As well as making various appearances in television shows such as Law & Order and Sex and the City, she made her Broadway debut in a 1998 production of Footloose. Since then, she has starred in multiple musicals, including Love, Janis, Dreamgirls, Hair and Jesus Christ Superstar.

Professor Callahan – Michael Rupert

In addition to appearing in multiple television shows, Michael Rupert has an extensive stage career, with Broadway credits including the original 1972 production of Pippin. Further shows include Sweet Charity, Mail, City of Angels, Ragtime, Falsettos and On the Town. Rupert also originated the role of Marvin in William Finn musicals March of the Falsettos and Falsettoland.

Brooke Wyndham – Nikki Snelson

After making her Broadway debut in 1999 alongside Bernadette Peters in Annie Get Your Gun, Nikki Snelson appeared in television shows such as All My Children and Desperate Housewives. Following this, she featured in the television musical Reefer Madness, and went on to originate the role of Brooke Wyndham in Legally Blonde the Musical. Further musicals include the National Tour of A Chorus Line and the Broadway production of Frank Wildhorn’s Wonderland.

Vivienne Kensington – Kate Shindle

Well-known for her role in the 2004 film Stepford Wives, Kate Shindle has an extensive US stage career, with credits including the original Broadway production of Jekyll & Hyde. Since then, she has gone on to star in productions across the country, such as Cabaret, Children of Eden and Wonderland. Additionally, she originates the role of Alison in the first US National Tour of Fun Home.

Replacement Elle Woods

Bailey Hanks (From July 23rd 2008)

After winning MTV’s popular search Legally Blonde: The Musical – The Search for Elle Woods, Bailey Hanks went on to star in the production on Broadway. Prior to this, she starred in musicals at various theatres, including The Wizard of Oz, Seussical the Musical and High School Musical. She also appeared in Step Up 3D and daytime soap opera Guiding Light.

Creative Team

Produced by Kate Wetherhead, Dori Berinstein, Beth Curry, Noah Weisberg and Marc Platt.

Direction by Jerry Mitchell
Book by Heather Hach
Music by Nell Benjamin and Laurence O’Keefe
Lyrics by Nell Benjamin and Laurence O’Keefe
Choreography by Jerry Mitchell
Set Design by David Rockwell
Costume Design by Gregg Barnes
Lighting Design by Kenneth Posner
Sound Design by ACME Sound Partners
Musical Direction by James Sampliner
Orchestrations by Christopher Jahnke

Awards

  • 2007 Drama Desk Awards – Nominated for 10 Drama Desk Awards, including Best Musical.
  • 2008 Tony Awards – Nominated for 7 Tony Awards, including Best Book of a Musical.

Reviews

The New York Times

New York Times 100x100“Flossing between songs is recommended for anyone who attends “Legally Blonde,” the nonstop sugar rush of a show that opened last night at the Palace Theater, joining the ranks of such nearby temples to candy worship as the M&M and Hershey’s theme stores. This high-energy, empty-calories and expensive-looking hymn to the glories of girlishness, based on the 2001 film of the same title, approximates the experience of eating a jumbo box of Gummi Bears in one sitting.”

USA Today

USA Today 100x100“Bundy is a capable and likeable performer, and certainly looks the part of Blondes heroine, with a wholesome face and a killer bod that’s pretty in pink. But her Elle lacks the comic punch required to make the character more than an amusing poster girl for feel-good feminism. Richard H. Blake and Christian Borle are serviceable as Elle’s upwardly mobile college beau and the humbler mensch she meets at Harvard, though Michael Rupert and Nikki Snelson are more entertaining as a forbidding professor and celebrity murder suspect.”

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