Grammy and Tony-nominated singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles will make her acting debut this spring, stepping into the Broadway musical “Waitress,” producers announced Thursday.
She will take over the lead role from Tony winner Jessie Mueller, whose last performance will be March 26. Bareilles, who wrote the music and lyrics for the show, will begin performances on March 31 and continue through June 11, 2017.
Last year, Bareilles earned a Tony nomination for Best Original Score for “Waitress,” which also picked up nods for Best Musical, for Mueller and for supporting actor Christopher Fitzgerald.
Bareilles’ work on the show also earned her Drama Desk Award nominations for Outstanding Music and Outstanding Lyrics, an Outer Critics Circle Award nomination for Outstanding New Score, and a Grammy Award nomination for Best Musical Theater Album.
Since her 2007 debut album, “Little Voice,” which reached No. 1 in 22 countries around the world, the Eureka, California, native has gone on to release a New York Times best-selling book, “Sounds Like Me – My Life (so far) in Song,” and five studio albums, including her most recent, “What’s Inside: Songs from Waitress.”
“‘Waitress’ has turned out to be one of the great, true loves of my life, and they simply can’t get rid of me. 🙂 I consider it an incredible honor to follow the masterful work of Jessie Mueller as she so gracefully brought the character of Jenna to life, and I am thrilled to continue to tell this story that has so much heart,” Bareilles said in a statement. “This show changed my life in so many ways, and I feel great privilege in joining our beloved cast and crew who make me laugh and cry every time I watch the show. All I want is to keep sharing the love, and dear God please let me remember my lines.”
“Waitress,” based on the 2007 indie film written by the late Adrienne Shelly, opened April 24, 2016 at Broadway’s Brooks Atkinson Theatre.
It was the first Broadway musical in history to have four women in the four top creative team spots, with a book by Jessie Nelson, a score by six-time Grammy Award-nominated singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles, choreography by Lorin Latarro and direction by Tony Award-winner Diane Paulus.
Watch a video of Bareilles singing the show’s big 11 0’clock number above.