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Young actors explore racy roles in 'Legally Blonde'

By: Don Chaddock, Managing Editor
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Forty one actors, numerous volunteers and two dogs tackle one of the raciest productions put on by El Dorado Musical Theatre.

“Legally Blonde The Musical” looks at love, adulthood and judging books by covers, all through the eyes of fashion-merchandise-major-turned-law-student Elle Woods (Heather Clark) and from-the-slums professor’s assistant Emmett Forrest (Jonathan Cranmer).

The youngest in the show is 12 while the oldest is lead actor Clark.

According to Rick Wilson, CEO of the musical theater group, the show is their Encore production, which they produce once per year.

“With our Encore group, it’s our older kids and the only audition-only show we do,” he said. “This is kind of like the all-star team.”

Wilson said Encore shows allow the group to explore more adult themes.

“We also did ‘West Side Story,’ which has people getting killed. This show is PG-13, so it’s a little more racy, but a lot of fun,” Wilson said.

Cranmer, a Folsom resident, agreed.

“It’s a lot of fun to do a more adult show,” he said. “Most of our shows are geared for younger audiences. For us older teens, I’m 18, it’s nice to be able to do more contemporary shows.”

Clark, at 21, is aging out of the youth theater group. The El Dorado Hills resident recently transferred from Folsom Lake College to hit the books at California State University, Sacramento.

“I’ve aged out of all the normal shows, but this is a good show to go out on,” Clark said.

As far as the racy language and suggestive dance moves? Clark said it was very freeing.

“It’s a lot of fun because you can get away with a lot of stuff you can’t get away with in the regular shows.”

One of the more adult-themed characters is Kyle, commonly known as The UPS Guy, played by Taylor Presnall, 17.

Presnall relishes the “sex-object” role. This is his fourth show with El Dorado Musical Theatre. He attends Oak Ridge High School and does some of the drama productions there as well.

“This is my favorite role I’ve ever played in my life,” he said. “This is such an upbeat show.”

Opening weekend went well, according to those in the show.

“We had an amazing crowd opening night,” Presnall said. “The energy was up to the top.”

Jillian Curry, 16, also attends Oak Ridge but she’s no stranger to the musical theater group.

“This is my 25th or 26th show with EDMT,” she said. “Opening night was incredible. This is one of my favorite musicals. It was great to perform it and not just see it.”

Also new for Curry was working with animals. The show sports two dogs, Jagger and Kiki. The first is a 9-month-old Chihuahua adopted from The Grace Foundation. Kiki is a deaf 3-year-old rescue deaf Frenglish Bulldog. Both dogs now call The Local Bark home.

“I’ve never worked with animals before, but it was fun,” said Curry. “It was challenging at first. It definitely keeps you on your toes.”

To learn more about El Dorado Musical Theatre, visit www.edmt.info.

Reach Don Chaddock at donc@goldcountrymedia.com.