"Legally Blonde the Musical" is coming to the Civic Theatre
SAN DIEGO -- California golden girl Elle Woods and her four-legged friend Bruiser will be in San Diego for six days. Relive the stylish journey from the Delta Nu sorority house to Harvard Law School in the critically acclaimed national tour of "Legally Blonde the Musical."
Always a beacon of positivity, Elle is sassy, smart and not your typical blonde. It takes a natural-born charmer to pull of this determined blonde on stage and fill the Prada pumps of talented predecessors.
Meet Becky Gulsvig
Becky Gulsvig has been performing the role of Elle Woods for the past four years. She relates to Elle's character in many ways, but there are also many differences.
Unlike Elle, she grew up far from the ritzy glamor of California in Moorhead, Minn. As a child and teen, Gulsvig participated in hometown and school productions and knew at early age that she wanted to sing and act.
An ambitious achiever, Gulsvig graduated from Moorhead High School in 2000, one year ahead of schedule, and moved to New York with one goal in mind – to be on Broadway.
Gulsvig followed her dreams and not a man, but like Elle Woods she had to work very hard at proving herself.
She landed her first role on Broadway in the 2002 production of "Hairspray" as Amber Von Tussle and a few productions and five years later she was the understudy in the original Broadway cast of "Legally Blonde the Musical."
Now the star of the first national tour, Gulsvig continues to prove herself on stage.
The musical contains 18 songs and Gulsvig sings 16 of them. She laughs when I mention this and notes that she has never counted.
“I have always gone with the Nike model – I just do it,” she says when asked how she mentally prepares for such an intense performance.
“I can make a lot of parallels between this business and Elle’s story,” Gulsvig says. “I have constantly have had to prove myself because I have constantly been underestimated; and as a women and as an actor you are always fighting the uphill battle – so for those reasons I can relate to Elle and I can channel into that part of Elle each night.”
“I have never been a huge pre-show routine kind of person. I definitely have a cup of tea, try to stay active before each performance by checking out the sites in each city and I also try to do a lot of yoga because the high heels have taken a toll on my body.”
In that respect, Gulsvig is also very different from Elle. She prefers the outdoors and playing sports to shopping and wearing heels; although, she has discovered a newfound appreciation for “girliness and the color pink.”
On stage, Gulsvig envelops herself into Elle’s world and says that she tries to capture her spirit, positivity and determination.
“I really enjoy performing the end,” she says. “For many reasons but mostly because I feel that I have come so far both personally and as Elle Woods and in the story so has Elle. I can relate to her speech at graduation when she acknowledges that she is a better person because of all of the good and the bad things along the way.”
Gulsvig has been on tour with "Legally Blonde the Musical" for most of the year, but her husband and their dog have been traveling with her and she is enjoying every minute.
“Not everyone can make it to New York,” Gulsvig says. “And having been involved with this production for so long, it’s been really cool to see the different theaters and towns we have brought this [musical] to.”
The fans have been very receptive as well and in most theaters, the majority of the audience wears something pink.
“Even the guys will throw on a pink shirt,” she says. “It is nice to see that spirit and feel that everyone feels the need to participate a little bit extra than you would for other shows.”
In Seattle, Gulsvig recalls hearing about a drag queen that “evidently was decked out to the nines and made a fabulous Elle Woods” but she did not stick around after the performance and Gulsvig was unable to meet her.
Gulsvig was recently in Portland and she says it became her new favorite stop. “I really liked the Northwest, the whole vibe, the outdoors and the artsy feel – I had a great time there, but I am looking forward to San Diego’s weather.”
She also adds that she feels Californians seem to get Elle Woods more than other people do and that the production’s jokes ringer truer in California, so for those reasons she is also looking forward to the San Diego performance.
“This play is like a rocket” Gulsvig says “It may seem like a girly show but many men who often get dragged along thinking they’re going to be miserable have a surprisingly great time.”
In its first year on Broadway, "Legally Blonde the Musical" earned critical acclaim and several award nominations, including seven 2007 Tony Award nominations, 10 2007 Drama Desk Award nominations and a 2007 Outer Critics Circle Award.
The production is in town from March 30 to April 4, for show times and additional information visit our Events Calendar.