Berkley students ready to bend and snap for ‘Legally Blonde’ musical

By: Mike Koury | Woodward Talk | Published April 2, 2024

 Jordan Rowan and Sebastian Hames rehearse a scene for Berkley High School’s production of its “Legally Blonde” musical.

Jordan Rowan and Sebastian Hames rehearse a scene for Berkley High School’s production of its “Legally Blonde” musical.

Photo provided by John Hopkins


BERKLEY — The students of Berkley High School’s Drama Department are ready to hit the stage for the department’s next musical production.

The school’s Be Drama club will present “Legally Blonde” April 18-21 at the Berkley High School auditorium, 2325 Catalpa Drive. The show is a musical adaptation of the 2001 movie of the same name, which first appeared on Broadway in 2007.

The club’s drama coordinator and musical director, John Hopkins, said the cast members have adjusted well to their roles over the course of the last two months of rehearsals.

“We have a lot of fun things planned for the set that are being worked out this week (during spring break) while there’s nobody at school, but the cast seems to be loving it,” he said. “I’m seeing some of the best performances since I’ve been in Berkley.”

One of the new sets involves the installation of an automated 30-foot turntable on the stage.

“It’s just a big thing for a high school to really be able to use,” Hopkins said. “That will help with making some transitions so much more interesting.”

Starring as the lead for the first time for one of the high school’s productions will be Jordan Rowan, who will be the musical’s Elle Woods.

Rowan, a senior from Berkley, has been acting in Berkley productions since the sixth grade. While the lead role does add to the stress levels for the show, Rowan was grateful to get this opportunity for her last show at the high school.

“I really enjoyed being in the ensemble in my younger years in high school. I liked being in supportive roles and stuff, but I just kind of felt like when the show was announced. … I felt like maybe this role could be so good for me and this is my shot,” she said. “I just kind of auditioned and hoped for the best.”

For the character of Woods, Rowan, 17, can definitely relate to her personality, though not so much her socioeconomic status.

Rowan said that Woods, originally portrayed by Reese Witherspoon, was someone that she definitely aspires to be.

“I definitely relate to her charisma and her attitude,” she said. “She’s very positive. I feel like her role continues to be knocked down. … I definitely relate to her resilience.”

In seeing the cast prepare for the show, Hopkins stated he has been able to see leadership from the main actors throughout the rehearsal process.

“They’re really kind of a master class, and this is what you can do if you work hard, if you spend so much time preparing, if you take it seriously, if you love what you do,” he said.

The showtimes for “Legally Blonde” will be at 7 p.m. April 18-20 and at 3 p.m. Sunday, April 21.

Rowan is excited for the audience to see the show.

“I’m definitely ready to share it with the people around me, the people who’ve been hearing me talk; like, me and all my friends talk about the rehearsal process. I’m excited for them to actually see the finished product,” Rowan said. “I’m definitely nervous, but I’m excited more so.”

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