Over fifty students from Windermere School took to the stage recently, to perform the school’s version of the smash hit, feel-good musical, Legally Blonde: The Musical.
Based on the novel by Amanda Brown and with music and lyrics by Laurence O’Keefe and Neil Benjamin, Legally Blonde: The Musical follows the transformation of Elle Woods, as she swaps fashion for law, bagging a place at the prestigious Harvard Law School in an attempt to win back her snobby boyfriend, Warner Huntingdon III. Along the way she encounters stereotypes, snobbery and scandal as she chases her dreams but, with the help of her friends, Paulette Bonafonte and Emmett Forrest, she soon realises her true potential and becomes so much more than the Malibu Blonde she’s perceived to be.
Pupils from Years 7 to 13 took to the stage in this all-singing, all-dancing production, delighting the audience with well-choreographed, upbeat routines, addictive songs, slick costume changes and clever set designs, as well as a huge helping of laughter.
From the opening notes of ‘Omigod You Guys’, through the high-tempo ‘Whipped Into Shape’ to the final chords of ‘Find My Way’, the audience in the school’s Crampton Hall was truly entertained.
As Elle bids to win back the man of her dreams, she learns that the law can be used to help others and, by successfully defending exercise queen Brooke Wyndham in a murder trial, she earns an internship from the pompous and manipulative Professor Callahan.
Katriona Redhead, who played Elle, thoroughly enjoyed the role; “Having the privilege to play the role of Elle this year has been amazing. She has a lot more to her than first meets the eye. It’s been such a fun experience and I have learned so much about myself and others, which I never would have learned without taking this opportunity.”
For Matty Alderson, who played Emmett, this was the first time he had played a lead role, and he was thrilled to be part of it; “The process to get the cast ‘show ready’ has been long, but I have seen myself, and a great number of my peers, develop and evolve for this performance. It was also amazing to see so many of the younger students get involved.”Adds Ian Lavender, Headmaster at Windermere School: “It has been quite an adventure assembling this musical. We have had the pleasure of welcoming back two ex-students, Megan Rea and Martha Boggon, who have been in the school frequently recently, pouring their time into supporting the musical. This injection of zest, combined with their experience of using the stage in Crampton Hall to full effect, led to some magnificent performances.“What has been achieved in the last few weeks is exceptional and I hope that the cast can see what is possible when everyone works together and concentrates on a single goal. When a stage is busy, every single person is important and the technical crew, the backstage team and the orchestra are central to ensuring the public face of the show remains seamless. They did this magnificently and I would like to congratulate everybody involved for a stunning show.
“I hope those who took part in Legally Blonde will feel justly proud and able to extend this new-found confidence to other areas of their school lives.”
The first time my daughter and I visited the school she said to me “that is a happy school no question.” The scholastic achievements of the school are evident and an easy measure for a school to demonstrate. What is hard to quantify is the holistic development of a pupil at which, in my experience, Windermere School excels.
Windermere School is such a unique community to be a part of. Not only is it based in a truly beautiful and inspiring national park, but the environment created by staff and students alike makes for an incredibly supportive, proactive, exciting and international place of learning in which everyone can thrive and be the best they can be.