Fall 2013 Broadway Guide
by Whitney Spaner, 08/28/2013
Jessie Mueller. Photo: Nathan Johnson
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Beautiful: The Carole King Musical
Jessie Mueller moved to New York City from Chicago to play Melinda Wells in the 2011 Broadway revival of On a Clear Day You Can See Forever—a role Barbra Streisand made famous—and since then has had a few ups and downs. On a Clear Day closed early to terrible reviews, but Mueller—who was heralded as a bright spot in the production, which also featured Harry Connick Jr.—had been discovered. Last year she starred on Broadway in Nice Work If You Can Get It and The Mystery of Edwin Drood; now she's landed the role of legendary singer/songwriter Carole King in the new musical Beautiful, written by the Oscar-nominated screenwriter Douglas McGrath. Much has been written about King's years collaborating with James Taylor, Joni Mitchell and Carly Simon, but this show focuses on King's early life in Brooklyn as Carole Klein and her marriage to her songwriting partner, Gerry Goffin, with whom she wrote classics like "Will You Love Me Tomorrow," "Up on the Roof" and "You Make Me Feel Like a Natural Woman." Sorry, Chicago, but it doesn't look like Mueller will be back anytime soon.
Stephen Sondheim Theatre, 124 W. 43rd St. Previews start November 21; opens January 12, 2014.