SAINT GEORGE — St. George Musical Theater’s typical repertoire of Rodgers and Hammerstein, Lerner and Loewe and the like edged just outside the box recently with a sparkling pink production. Legally Blonde: The Musical, with book by Heather Hach and music and lyrics by Laurence O’Keefe and Nell Benjamin comes into the St. George Opera House with a delightful energy and a storyline with a bit of a kick. Speaking candidly before the show, Bruce Bennett, president and artistic director for SGMT, said, “It’s a little like going to your favorite Chinese restaurant buffet where you typically load up on orange chicken and broccoli and beef. This production is like sampling the Kung Pao chicken. It’s a little bit spicy, but you’re going to like it.” Objections to the production’s PG-13 content will likely be quickly overruled by the heart-warming story that resonates with people on so many levels and teaches several valuable lessons.

The spice to which Bennett alluded kicks off in the musical’s opening number, “Omigod You Guys” as the Delta Nu sorority sisters look forward to the anticipated engagement of their sorority president, Elle Woods. Woods, played by Bethany Ure, has heard from her boyfriend Warner Huntington III, played by Zane Kroff, that he has big news. The Delta Nus simply cannot contain their enthusiasm — a fact that was unquestionably evident in the energy of the ensemble cast and their raucous romp. While their excitement was appreciated, the shrill nature of their fervor made it difficult to understand some of their lines. Adjusting either their voices or the microphone levels would help with the overall enjoyment of the listener while still making the point that they are thrilled.

Legally Blonde: The Musical follows the story made famous by the 2001 film in which Elle Woods, sorority princess and valley girl, has her life turned upside down by an unexpected breakup with her boyfriend, Warner Huntington III. He’s off to Harvard Law School, and claims to be in need of a more serious girl to reach his professional goals. Elle makes it her mission to join him there and uses her potent combo of credentials and charisma to charm her way into Harvard Law herself, only to find Warner is already dating someone else and has no interest in her upon her arrival. The disappointment leaves her to question what she wants most and make a choice between giving up and going back to the California sunshine or charging ahead and overcoming new obstacles to become something more than she or her sorority sisters had ever imagined.

From the beginning it was clear the lead roles in this production were supremely well cast. Ure perfectly embodied the physical beauty, chic, and blend of hot temperament and endearing nature that personifies Elle Woods. Ure’s vulnerability on numbers like “Legally Blonde” and her sweet friendship with Paulette, played by Rebecca Davidson, made her an easy character to love, while her strong vocals and impressive ability to walk and dance in incredibly high heels in numbers like “Bend and Snap” and “What Do You Want” were the bright pink icing on top.

Holding strong as the man of her dreams, Kroff’s version of Warner was attractive enough to be believable as the love interest, arrogant enough to be seen as the bad guy, and yet endearing enough to make you almost want to root for him in the end. His exchanges throughout the production with Elle vacillated between fatherly and condescending to hopeful and almost regretfully impressed, giving the character of Warner greater depth, and making him interesting to watch.

Davidson’s performance Paulette was both moving and hilarious, depending on whether she was singing beautifully about her long-lost love in the song, “Ireland” or fumbling her way through the “Bend and Snap” to attract the attention of the UPS man, fabulously played by David Leishman.

Legally Blonde: The Musical plays at SGMT through April 20.

Amidst the strength of the cast, however, the audio balance issue reared its ugly head a few other times throughout the show. Under the technical direction of Jennifer Roberts with audio design by John Blasko, the solos and smaller group numbers were well mixed, but whenever the entire cast joined in the background voices often overpowered the lead vocals. At other times, the music itself was louder than the cast. With so many clever lines weaved into the music of this show, you simply don’t want to miss any of the lyrics; a problem that can likely be resolved at the sound board.

What may have been occasionally difficult to understand vocally, was certainly made up for in the strength of the dancing of this talented cast, and the visual feast available in the costumes, set design and props. Props to prop director Emili Whitney for clever additions such as the “LSAT for Blondes” book, and Elle Magazine featuring Reese Witherspoon on the cover which were subtle, but added an extra bit of humor into a few scenes.

Maria Vaccaro’s choreography was excellent throughout, but the jump rope number featuring fitness guru and accused murderer Brooke Wyndham, played by Katelyn Parkinson, really got the audience’s attention. Slinging jump ropes around in such a small in-the-round theater demanded great attention to detail by Parkinson and her fellow jump-roping inmates, and certainly kept those on the front row in the audience on their toes.

Gabriel Ashton Brown‘s direction makes Legally Blonde the Musical entertaining and enlightening at the same time. While Brown did not shy away from the challenging topics like sexual harassment and judging a person based solely on appearance, she managed to lean into the emotion of these topics while still keeping the rest of the show light and fun. With all the energy and talent in this well-crafted show, it’s easy to see why the verdict is in and Legally Blonde the Musical at St. George Musical Theater is a performance you won’t want to miss.

Legally Blonde: The Musical plays Mondays and Thursdays-Saturday at 7:30 PM with Saturday matinees through April 20 at the Opera House of St. George (212 N. Main Street, St. George). Tickets are $28. For more information, visit