Three-time Grammy Award nominated singer/songwriter Vanessa Carlton is about to add “Broadway Musical Star” to her resume. The celebrated performer will join the Broadway production of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, playing the show’s iconic title character. Carlton will begin performances Thursday, June 27 at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre for a 10-week run in the musical that celebrates the life and music of recording superstar Carole King.
Carlton shared her excitement for the forthcoming opportunity, “It is a privilege to tell Carole’s story. She wasn’t just a great pianist and writer, she was on the frontier of women in power positions in the music industry. Her courage and sacrifice, not to mention fierce sense of self, paved the way for artists like myself to have a shot. Being a pianist, writer, and mother myself, I am thrilled to honor her and bring to life the story of a fellow woman balancing it all.”
Vanessa Carlton first landed on the international radar with her debut album Be Not Nobody (certified platinum). The album features the hit singles “Ordinary Day” and “A Thousand Miles.” The latter was one was one of the biggest hits of 2002 and Carlton was nominated for three Grammy Awards including Record of the Year and Song of the Year. In 2011, Carlton set out as an independent recording artist with her album Rabbits on the Run and then continued her musical transformation when she released the critically-acclaimed studio album Liberman in 2015.
Beautiful features a score composed of the song hits written and/or performed by King and Gerry Goddin, as well as by the team of Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil. Among the song standards in the score are “You’ve Got a Friend,” “One Fine Day,” “Up on the Roof,” “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling,” “Will You Love Me Tomorrow,” and “Natural Woman,” Beautiful features a book by Douglas McGrath, direction by Marc Bruni, and choreography by Josh Prince.
Beautiful, which has been running on Broadway for five-years, “has thrilled Broadway with the inspiring true story of one woman’s remarkable journey from teenage songwriter to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.”
Mark Robinson is the author of the two-volume encyclopedia The World of Musicals, The Disney Song Encyclopedia, and The Encyclopedia of Television Theme Songs. He maintains a theater and entertainment blog at markrobinsonwrites.com.
Photo by Nathan Johnson.