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“Mean Girls” ran at the Hobby Center from Aug. 17 to Aug. 21. The musical version of the 2004 classic brought a new audience to the iconic and beloved movie.

Being a fan of “Mean Girls” since previews began in 2018, I had high expectations, most of which were met. The show was full of perfectly timed comedic relief, along with a few lines regarding the current political state of the world.

High expectations were met

While English Bernhardt typically plays Cady Heron, standby Adriana Salice went on instead and blew me away. Salice perfectly showed how Cady changes throughout the show, making everything seem effortless. Not to mention her glowing voice, which I wish could sing me the cast recording each time I listen to it.

Salice’s voice blended well with Adante Carters’, who plays Cady’s love interest, Aaron Samuels. That being said, the chemistry between the two fell flat, and the two characters seemed more like best friends than love interests.

Photo courtesy of The Hobby Center

The Plastics

When the infamous Plastics took the stage, my jaw fell to the floor, and rumors say it’s still there. With all three of the Plastics portrayed by women of color, it paved the way for current and future casting that reflects the diversity of the audience and future actors and actresses in the making.

Starting with Karen Smith, Morgan Ashley Bryant portrays “the dumbest girl you will ever meet” and gives her such a strong voice. While Bryant shows the dumb side of Karen well, she also adds in some depth to the character. Bryant hints to the audience that Karen knows more than she admits.

Jasmine Rogers shows Gretchen Wiener’s anxiety surrounding her and Regina’s friendship and her overall self-image. When performing “What’s Wrong With Me,” Rogers stunned everyone with her powerful vocals.

Nadina Hussan’s Regina George was immediately intoxicating. She displayed the immense amount of power needed when playing a character such as Regina. Hassan has perfected the speaking voice used for the ruler of North High. However, I found some of her high and sustained notes to fall flat. It seemed as if she was holding back.

Lindsay Heather Pearce plays everyone’s favorite feminist, Janis Sarkisian. Between her strong vocals and genius comedic timing, Pearce brought a new light to Janis that isn’t shown on cast recordings. Pearce makes the character stronger than ever while also adding more humor to Janis.

Final thoughts

“Mean Girls” went through a few changes after COVID-19, switching some lyrics and lines to make them more politically relevant. The entire touring production cast and crew impressed me, making me wish they had their own cast recording.

While “Mean Girls” is no longer running at the Hobby Center, you can still enjoy it through the Broadway recording on any music streaming service.

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