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September 20, 2016

This past summer, the University of Kentucky College of Law helped young actors from Stage Right Acting bring the story of Elle Woods, Harvard’s beloved blonde, to stage.

The actors, local students ranging in age from 12-19 years-old, spent a mid-summer morning at UK Law to help with character development for their performance of Legally Blonde: The Musical Jr. Miles Meehan, owner of Stage Right Acting and director for the show, approached Marianna Jackson Clay, Visiting Professor at UK Law, about showing the cast what life as a law student is really like.

“My goal was to immerse them in a real world law school so that each of the cast members could ground their character's feet into reality for their performances,” said Meehan.

So, UK Law faculty and staff came together to give actors a well-rounded overview of law school. Director of Admissions Jimmi Nicholson explained admissions qualifications, deadlines and the application process; Professor Jackson-Clay discussed courtroom procedures including standing, objections, addressing the court and using a podium; Professor Brian L. Frye shared experiences from a 1L classroom; and Faculty Services Librarian Franklin L. Runge gave actors a tour of the Alvin E. Evans Law Library.

I believe the cast's visit to UK Law was wildly important to their character development!” exclaimed Meehan. “Whether it be the ‘legalese’ or culture within the law community, after the visit the students seemed to really connect with the script and story in a different and more realistic way.”

Meehan noted the cast members who visited UK Law “absolutely loved it!” Several students even expressed a newfound interest in attending law school, and the student’s parents commended the fun and educational experience.

“For me, acting isn't just about getting on stage and performing. It's also about learning and experiencing new people, places and things,” said Meehan.

Legally Blonde: The Musical Jr. is based on the award-winning Broadway musical and the smash hit motion picture starring Reese Witherspoon. Actors hit the stage to tell a story of tenacity and grit through music and dance July 22-24, 2016.

Aside from the musical, Stage Right Acting has worked with Professor Jackson Clay in the past to provide actors for mock depositions and pre-trial meetings for several of her classes.

“We have thoroughly enjoyed working with UK Law and hope to collaborate again in the future,” said Meehan.