Carole King Musical Finds Its Star

Carole King Musical Finds Its Star

Tony nominee Jessie Mueller will play the singer and songwriter

Jessie Mueller will star as Carole King in the new musical based on the "Tapestry" legend's transformation from a Brooklyn teen into a rock 'n' roll star, the show's producers said Monday.

Entitled "Beautiful-The Carole King Musical," the show is moving up its debut from 2014 to this winter. It will now begin previews on Broadway at the Stephen Sondheim Theater on Nov. 21, 2013, with an official opening night following on January 12, 2014.

Mueller was nominated for a Tony award for her performance opposite Harry Connick, Jr. in 2011's "On a Clear Day You Can See Forever." She has also appeared in "Nice Work If You Can Get It" opposite Matthew Broderick and in Roundabout Theater Company's revival of "The Mystery of Edwin Drood."

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"Beautiful" will focus on King's highs and lows, which include both the chart-topping success of "Tapestry" and the break-up of her partnership with and marriage to Gerry Goffin. It's a meaty, potentially star-making role for an up-and-comer like Mueller.

It's also a testament to the continuing popularity of juke box musicals like "Jersey Boys," which looked at the rise of the Four Seasons, and "Motown," which presented a sanitized version of  Berry Gordy's life story.

"Beautiful" features a book by playwright and Oscar-nominated filmmaker Douglas McGrath ("Bullets Over Broadway") along with songs like "You've Got a Friend" and "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" that were written by King along with collaborators like Goffin, Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil.

"Beautiful" will focus on King's highs and lows which include both the chart-topping success of "Tapestry" and the break-up of her partnership with and marriage to Goffin. It's a meaty, potentially star-making role for an up-and-comer like Mueller.

Marc Bruni ("Old Jews Telling Jokes") will direct the show.