Theater prepares for fall musical

‘Legally Blonde’ contains messages of female empowerment


Maggie Klaers

Choreographer Julianne Mundale, junior Lilly Strathman, sophomore Dayanara Mora Zengel and freshmen Haley Nielson and Gwendolyn Rockler-Gladen rehearse the opening number of “Legally Blonde”. The show will open 7 p.m., Nov. 15 in the Auditorium.

Maggie Klaers and Emily Ziessman

According to thespian president senior Ruby Stillman, Park’s next production is set to be “Legally Blonde”.

“(‘Legally Blonde’) deals with really tough topics in a fun way. Feminism, obviously, but also stereotypes of women and how that is overcome and how that plays out. Also, sexual assault is in there, which is a big topic.”

Director Jodi Schifsky said the musical touches on feminist values and issues.

“There’s an undercurrent of a girl power, and the underdog defying expectations, they sort of cliched don’t judge a book by its cover piece to it too,” Schifsky said.

According to Schifsky, in the face of a setback, the protagonist — Elle Woods — decides to step up and solve the problem herself.

“Elle Woods, who, instead of getting proposed to, which is what she thinks is going to happen, gets dumped because her boyfriend is going to Harvard Law and needs somebody more serious,” Schifsky said. “She takes that as her cue to get herself into Harvard Law and rise the ranks while there.”

Stillman said she thinks students will want to see the iconic movie put on stage.

“We’re hoping that the notoriety of the name of the show, because it’s also a movie will help students come,” Stillman said.

According to Schifsky the dances and music create an upbeat tone in the show.

“It’s a really fun show with a lot of high energy. And so like the big choreographed numbers are going to be a lot of fun. There’s a silliness to it. Even though it has a message, there’s an airiness and an entertainment factor that I think the audience will really enjoy,” Schifsky said.

As a first-time member of the pit orchestra, freshman Gretchen Huebsch is looking forward to being a part of the show.

It’s a musical, so the music is obviously a really important part. I’m excited to be able to contribute to that and to make it all come together,” Huebsch said.

Stillman intends on using her experience as a senior to foster growth in the theater program during her final shows.

“Personally, I am excited to be a senior in the show. I really feel like I have a good opportunity to role model for everyone else,” Stillman said. “In addition to being thespian president, I can bring everyone in and help foster a love for theater that will hopefully continue. I’m really interested in the longevity of the theater program, so improving that or working towards that will be really fun.”

Students who present a student ID will be admitted for free to all showtimes of “Legally Blonde.” The show will open 7 p.m. Nov. 15 in the Auditorium, with more performances to follow Nov. 16, 17, 22, 23, and 24.