BROADWAY’S NEWEST SMASH HIT
BEAUTIFUL – THE CAROLE KING MUSICAL
PREMIERES IN AUSTIN AT BASS CONCERT HALL MARCH 21 – 26, 2017
Producers Paul Blake and Sony/ATV Music Publishing announce that the Tony & Grammy Award-winning Broadway hit Beautiful—The Carole King Musical, about the early life and career of the legendary and groundbreaking singer/songwriter, will make its Austin premiere at Bass Concert Hall on March 21 – 26, 2017.
“Carole King might be a native New Yorker, but her story of struggle and triumph is as universal as they come – and her music is loved the world over,” producer Paul Blake said. “We know that audiences throughout the country will embrace this show just as Broadway and London audiences have.”
With a book by Tony® and Academy® Award-nominee Douglas McGrath, direction by Marc Bruni and choreography by Josh Prince, Beautiful features a stunning array of beloved songs written by Gerry Goffin/Carole King and Barry Mann/Cynthia Weil. The show opened on Broadway at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre (125 West 43 Street) in January 2014, where it has since broken all box office records and recently became the highest grossing production in the Theatre’s history.
The Original Broadway Cast Recording of Beautiful – The Carole King Musical (Ghostlight Records), won the 2015 Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album and is available on CD, digitally, and on vinyl. Beautiful opened in London at the Aldwych Theatre in February 2015 and launched its First National Tour in September 2015.
Long before she was Carole King, chart-topping music legend, she was Carol Klein, Brooklyn girl with passion and chutzpah. She fought her way into the record business as a teenager and, by the time she reached her twenties, had the husband of her dreams and a flourishing career writing hits for the biggest acts in rock ‘n’ roll. But it wasn’t until her personal life began to crack that she finally managed to find her true voice. Beautiful tells the inspiring true story of King’s remarkable rise to stardom, from being part of a hit songwriting team with her husband Gerry Goffin, to her relationship with fellow writers and best friends Cynthia Weil and Barry Mann, to becoming one of the most successful solo acts in popular music history. Along the way, she made more than beautiful music, she wrote the soundtrack to a generation. Beautiful features a stunning array of beloved songs written by Gerry Goffin/Carole King and Barry Mann/Cynthia Weil, including “I Feel The Earth Move,” “One Fine Day,” “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,” “You’ve Got A Friend” and the title song.
Check out the recent interview below with Beautiful – The Carole King Musical cast member, Alaina Mills who is cast as Swing; Understudy for the role of Carole King, Cynthia and Genie as well as the Dance Captain in Beautiful – The Carole King Musical. This is one busy lady!
1. Tell me about your role in Carole King.
As Dance Captain with Beautiful, I maintain the choreography and the choreographer’s intentions! Doing a show eight times a week is fascinating on the human body and mind. The performers, completely subconsciously, can shift their choreography ever-so-slightly and develop new habits, and they don’t have any idea! It becomes second nature to them, and new movements will pop up- an added flick of the wrist, or getting rid of a detail because maybe there is a small injury they don’t even feel. I have to figure out why that’s happening and try to get it back to its original form, or maybe find a solution if someone is feeling a tweak in their knee, for example. Also, spacing can easily shift and performers are so good at adapting to their surroundings that if one person shifts, before you know it, the whole production number could have shifted. I just tweak here and there. It requires patience and kindness toward everyone’s individual performance since everyone out there is always doing their absolute best. They’re an awesome and receptive company, even when they don’t always know right away what I may be talking about since their subtle changes are so subconscious. As a swing, I perform when someone is ill or on vacation and such. Sometimes it can happen in the middle of the show, unfortunately, but that’s what us swings are there for so that the show can go on and so that our cast mates can go take care of themselves! I understudy Carole, Cynthia, Carole’s mother, and two of the ensemble ladies. I enjoy not knowing what can come next and exploring the different psychologies that make up the lives of the the world of Carole King, including Carole King herself! It keeps my brain constantly working and my body and voice have to be ready at a moment’s notice. It keeps me healthy and keeps me grounded and my parents get to travel around when I’m on for someone they haven’t seen me do yet! I
2. Why do you think the story of Carole King is so popular?
I think the story of Carole King is so very popular because she was one of the voices that helped shape the lives of every person who listened to music at the time. Everyone who grew up with this music has a nostalgia attached when they hear the songs- they remember where they were when they heard one of these songs for the first time. Maybe they got their first kiss, maybe they danced to it in high school, maybe they have a tie to their childhood home listening to the records. The attachments are endless. And all the while, maybe they didn’t know the lives of the songwriters writing tirelessly and endlessly in the Brill Building and/or 1650 Broadway. That was a whole world many didn’t know about. I love hearing the reactions from audience members when they see our show tell the creation of a song they hold dear. Being able to see the genius in these writers’ minds is part of what makes this story so fascinating to watch every night. They were real people who reached a generation, and Carole King kept on reaching when she developed Tapestry. It was a new generation of writing that spoke to and reflected on a changing generation. They were going through Vietnam, they were beginning to experience new and free love without boundaries, and they were free to express both the highs and lows of that love and Carole King invoked that in Tapestry. And this story delves into what inspired her to write that music. I think it inspires all humans who see this story to know that Carole personally went through what a lot of people went and still go through and that through the power of art and the natural human condition, we can all rise up out of difficult times and see how “beautiful” the world is, even when life hands you what you don’t always expect nor always desire. Goodness and beauty can come from anything. And people are reminded of that when they leave the theatre.
3. What is your favorite scene and please describe without giving to much away?
Hmmmm, my favorite scene…that’s difficult! I think it may be the final scene with Gerry Goffin and Carole. It occurs before she makes her big solo debut after Tapestry is released and she’s won Grammy after Grammy for it and she’s prevailed after some extremely tough personal times. This little scene (without giving too much away!), is one of strength, forgiveness, and deep human understanding and connection. That after all Gerry and Carole went through together, after time has passed, and Carole has embarked on a new journey, it was all meant to be and all meant to take pride in. That everything they went through, even in the darkness, ended up providing light and love. It’s so beautiful to watch and it’s so deliciously intimate and a perfectly written cherry on top of our story.
4. What is your favorite song?
My favorite song is also so difficult to pick! I think it may be Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil’s number one hit “You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling.” I LOVE the setup of how they wrote it, the unsureness in writing it, and the AWESOMENESS of what it became. And our two Righteous Brothers are pretty darn stellar at it. They fill every theatre and audience member with glorious sound. It’s pretty magical.
5. Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers?
Everyone who sees this show feels incredible afterward. I remember seeing it on Broadway the first time and I was astounded at the knowledge I gained about the time period and who these people were. Not to mention hearing and seeing these outstanding performances. And I realize how lucky I am to be a part of it and sometimes when I forget that, hearing and seeing the show every day reminds me that no matter what life hands me, and all of us, that it is a beautiful life to be apart of if we let it. That’s what Beautiful-The Carole King Musical leaves you remembering. And that’s an amazing thing to feel walking away from a show. That, and of course, THE SONGS! They’ll be stuck in your head! Come on out and enjoy and feel beautiful!
TICKETS: Start at $35. Tickets are available at BroadwayinAustin.com, the Bass Concert Hall box office, all Texas Box Office Outlets, by phone at (512) 477-6060. For groups of 10 or more, call (877) 275-3804 or email Austin.email@example.com
Interview by: S. Leigh for Macaroni Kid
Photo Credit: Joan Marcus