READING – Think Pink. Gather the whole family for Genesius Theatre’s production of “Legally Blonde The Musical Jr.” opening on March 6.
Join the Genesius Kids (ages 6 to 14) as they tell the story of beloved blonde Elle Woods and her journey to Harvard Law School with her dog Bruiser in tow, of course. Filled with pink glitter galore and adapted from the hit Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer motion picture, the award-winning Broadway production features music and lyrics by Laurence O’Keefe and Nell Benjamin and is adapted from the book by Heather Hach and novel by Amanda Brown.
Though Elle’s original intention when enrolling at Harvard is to prove to her former boyfriend, Warner, that she’s “serious” enough for the world and to be his girlfriend, her journey becomes a much bigger one, tackling stereotypes, snobbery and scandal. In fact, before she knows it, she’s outwitting her peers and discovering a career in law is her true calling.
Director Dara Himes, in her fifth year of working with the Genesius Kids productions, says audiences can expect high-energy dance numbers, but also introspective and thought-provoking moments.
“They will be cheering Elle (played by Ellen Rochlin) on by the end of the first number!” she said.
Himes goes on to explain that the 1-hour, 15-minute musical is about finding yourself and your place in the world.
“It has an uplifting message that with self-confidence and hard work, you can truly achieve your dreams. With how inspiring this musical is, there is no way audiences can leave without a smile,” she said.
Rochlin, 13, asserts that the fun story carries a serious message.
“I feel the real message behind this production is that women can do anything men can, and just because you like to be girly doesn’t mean that you aren’t as intelligent as everyone else,” said Rochlin.
In fact, Rochlin’s favorite part of playing Elle is the big court scene near the end of the production where her character proves herself.
“It’s empowering,” she said.
Despite becoming Elle’s nemesis of sorts, Luke Bennethum, a 15-year-old Berks Catholic High School student who plays Warner, also sees the show as uplifting.
“I’m very excited for the audience members to leave with so many positive messages, including believing in yourself, not letting anyone tell you what or who you are, and never doubting yourself,” he said.
Ellie Bercume, playing Paulette, would agree. Having never performed in front of a large audience before and just starting with Genesius a week into August of 2019, Ellie said she is also excited for people to see how the show comes together.
“Everyone put a lot of hard work into it so there’s no doubt it will be spectacular,” said the 13-year-old Governor Mifflin Middle School student.
Rounding out the cast is Harrison Brumbaugh as Emmett.
Show dates are March 6 and 7 at 7:30 p.m., March 8 at 3 p.m., March 11 and 12 at 7 p.m., March 13 at 7:30 p.m., March 14 at 2 p.m., and March 15 at 3 p.m. Rating is rated G.
Tickets are for Adult $20, Students (K-College) $15. For tickets and additional information, visit www.genesiusdifference.org.
Genesius is a 501-C-3 Non-profit organization. The theatre is located at 153 N. 10th St., Reading, and is handicapped accessible. Free parking is available (limited spaces available) next to the theatre. Call the theatre at 610-371-8151.