NEPA Scene Staff

Young cast (and chihuahua) performs in ‘Legally Blonde’ musical at Act Out Theatre in Dunmore Dec. 13-22

Young cast (and chihuahua) performs in ‘Legally Blonde’ musical at Act Out Theatre in Dunmore Dec. 13-22
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From a press release:

“Oh my God, you guys!” Act Out Theatre Group is bringing the Broadway musical “Legally Blonde” to Dunmore on Friday, Dec. 13 through Sunday, Dec. 22.

Elle Woods appears to have it all. Her life is turned upside down when her boyfriend Warner dumps her so he can attend Harvard Law. Determined to get him back, she charms her way into the prestigious law school. While there, she struggles with peers, professors, and her ex. With the support of some new friends, Elle quickly realizes her potential and sets out to prove herself to the world.

The production features high-energy dance numbers and powerhouse vocals that bring the major motion picture starring Reese Witherspoon to life onstage.

“We focused a lot of energy in the dances of this production,” said Dan Pittman, production director and Act Out Theatre’s artistic director. “I wanted to push them outside of their comfort zones and really stretch their abilities.”

Allyson Spangenburg of Plymouth portrays UCLA sorority girl Serena. She agrees with Pittman.

“[The most challenging aspect of this show is] trying to jump rope and sing at the same time in ‘Whipped Into Shape,'” Spangenburg said. “The cast has worked super hard on [the show], and this show can make you laugh and cry at the same time. It’s gonna be a great show.”

This production features alternating characters. Each night, some actors play different roles.

“Our goal is to give every workshop participant a well-rounded experience,” Pittman said. “A lot of the participants alternate with another participant in a lead role and secondary character or ensemble.”

In addition to Spangenburg, cast members include Liv Anderson of Shavertown, who alternates the roles of Elle Woods and Margot with Erin McLaughlin of Sweet Valley. Max Snyder (Madison Township) alternates the roles of Warner Huntington III and Professor Callahan with Caelan Howe-Baden (Taylor). Rocco Pugliese (Wilkes Barre Twp.) is one of the few in the cast who plays the same role every night – he portrays Emmett, one of Harvard’s top law students.

Elle Woods, played by Liv Anderson of Shavertown, is ready for
her first day of Harvard Law School. “What? Like it’s hard?”

The cast also includes Emily Carey (Dunmore), Allie Katz (South Abington), Maddie Hopkins (Plymouth), Sarah Pugliese (Wilkes-Barre Twp.), Sam Greenfield (Old Forge), Milana Snyder (Madison Twp.), Jason Berlew (Wilkes-Barre), Olivia Connell (Plains Twp.), Lorcan Baden (Taylor), Frank Carey (Dunmore), and Kim Pugliese (Wilkes-Barre Twp.). It features siblings (Rocco and Sarah Pugliese, Caelan and Lorcan Baden, and Max and Milana Snyder) as well as two Act Out parents (Kim Pugliese and Frank Carey).

Act Out has partnered with Griffin Pond Animal Shelter during this production.

“Since there are dogs in this show, we’ve decided to try to get one adopted,” Pittman said. “A dog from Griffin Pond will be in the show as Paulette’s beloved dog, Rufus.”

Elle’s pretty-in-pink chihuahua is played by Pittman’s own dog, Little Edie.

In addition to animal lovers, Anderson said everyone should come see the show for the message it tells.

“[‘Legally Blonde’] is such a fun show that speaks volumes on female empowerment,” she said.

McLaughlin agrees. People should come to see this show “to support our genuinely talented and hardworking cast and to see the hilarious movie that everyone loves in musical form,” she added.

“Legally Blonde” runs on the Act Out stage (150 E. Grove St., Dunmore) from Dec. 13 through Dec. 22, with performances on Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m.

Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students and seniors at the door. The theatre’s annual holiday revue will also be presented on Wednesday, Dec. 18 and Thursday, Dec. 19 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets can be reserved by visiting actouttheatre.com.

The Act Out Booster Club is also hosting a bake sale in the theater’s lobby.

The girls of Delta Nu pose with Act Out Theatre Group’s Christmas tree.