SQUAD GOALS: Members of a high school cheer squad, who also go to university together, in Legally Blonde: The Musical Jr.THE characters inLegally Blonde: The Musical Jr are mainly young people who have just finished high school and are enrolled in a law school at a prominent university.
While that might seem to be an unusual staging choice for a cast involving actors as young as 10, it has been very popular with junior performers who have been in two Newcastle productions – and audience members of all ages have found it to be a lot of fun.
Pantseat Performing Arts staged the show in 2017, and Bling Productions is rehearsing it with a 28-member cast aged 10 to 18 for shows at Lake Macquarie Performing Arts Centre on November 7 and 8.
One of the Bling cast, Maia Diaz, 17, was also in the Pantseat show, and enjoyed it so much that she auditioned for the new production. She is playing a very different role this time, as Vivienne, a law student who is chosen by Professor Callahan, the most feared teacher at the law school, to be hisassistant. Initially supporting the professor, she becomes a friend of Elle Woods, who has managed to get herself into the law school to try to persuade her former high school boyfriend, Warner, who has just started the law course, to come back to her.
Maia says Viviennesees herself as better than everyone else. But she warms to Elle.
The full-length Legally Blonde, a stage musical adaptation of a 2001 film comedy of the same name, has been a hit with audiences since it premiered on Broadway in 2007. And the young actors in the Bling production, directed by Jody Hooker, are certainly enjoying it. The unsmiling Professor Callahan is played by Javaan Amato, a very short 10-year-old. He laughingly says: “It’s really my character. He’s very evil. But, seriously, portraying him is fun and very exciting.”
The show’s Elle, Katie Collins, 18, finds her very bubbly. “She’s not a dumb blonde – and she’s not mean. She tries not to hurt other people’s feelings, and always has a positive outlook.” And Kartya Bailey, 18, sees her character – Paulette, a hairdresser – as providing comic relief. “She’s very down-to-earth in the way she talks to Elle and other people.”
Legally Blonde: The Musical JR, which runs for 75 minutes, plus an interval, retains most of the songs from the full-length show, many of which, such as Bend and Snap, which amusingly has a woman showing others how to do exercises that will attract male attention, have been hits.
The show can be seen at Lake Macquarie Performing Arts Centre, Lake Street, Warners Bay, at 6.30pm on Wednesday, November 7, and Thursday, November 8. Tickets: $25; student, pensioner $20; child, 12 and under, $15. trybooking成都夜总会招聘/XREY
MOONEY DOES MALCOMEDIAN Lawrence Mooney has been having fun with Malcolm Turnbull since last year’s Melbourne Festival – not that Turnbull would appreciate it – so it’s appropriate, given the former prime minister’s departure from politics, that he is on a regional tour with his show,Lawrence Mooney: An Evening with Malcolm, that will be staged at Wyong’s The Art House on Friday, November 2, at 8pm, and Newcastle City Hall on Saturday, November 3, at 8pm. All tickets are $44.90, with Newcastle bookings available through the Civic Theatre box office.
The 80-minute, interval-free performance, has Turnbull trying to get his own TV tonight show off the ground, and he has a high-profile political guest at each show. Mooney got the idea for the show when he became fascinated by Turnbull’s appearances onQ&Ain 2014. He admits that he actually likes Turnbull and was surprised when he approached him after seeing his performance one night.
STAR PSYCHICNew York’s John Edward, who has won popularity as a television personality, author and allegedpsychicmedium, has also included Newcastle in his latest n tour, with a two-hour show at the Civic on Tuesday, October 30, at 7pm. Ticket prices range from $73.55 to $135, with the highest-paying audience members getting VIP treatment. Over the past 25 years he has actually managed to predict future events and, in his down-to-earth shows and best-selling books, has shown an ability to communicate with those who have passed to the other side.