Chilina Kennedy to Play Carole King in “Beautiful” Beginning 3/7
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, PLEASE
BROADWAY’S NEXT CAROLE KING
IS NOT SO FAR AWAY!
TO PLAY CAROLE KING IN
BROADWAY SMASH HIT
“ B E A U T I F U L “
BEGINNING MARCH 7, 2015
New York, NY (January 20, 2015) – Producers Paul Blake and Sony/ATV Music Publishing announced today that Award-winning Canadian actress Chilina Kennedy, who made her Broadway debut as ‘Mary Magdalene’ in Jesus Christ Superstar, has nabbed the title role in Beautiful—The Carole King Musical, the smash hit musical about the early life and career of the legendary and groundbreaking singer/songwriter. Kennedy begins performances on March 7, 2015, succeeding Tony Award-winner Jessie Mueller, who will play her final performance in Beautiful on March 6 at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre (124 West 43rd Street).
“After seeing her excel over the years as the preeminent leading lady of Canada's Stratford Festival, I'm thrilled to welcome Chilina back to Broadway,” director Marc Bruni said. “She's a unique talent, and I can't wait for the audiences at the Sondheim to experience the warmth, vulnerability, and humility Chilina will bring to the role.”
Producers also announced today that Jessica Keenan Wynn (Heathers) will join the cast on March 7, making her Broadway debut as ‘Cynthia Weil’. Wynn fills in for Tony Award-nominee Anika Larsen, who will depart the show temporarily for maternity leave.
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 Original Broadway Cast Recording of Beautiful – The Carole King Musical (Ghostlight Records), now a 2015 Grammy Award nominee for Best Musical Theater Album, is available on CD, digitally, and on vinyl. In addition to the hit Broadway production, which has broken all box office records and recently became the highest grossing show in the history of the Sondheim Theatre, Beautiful will open in London at the Aldwych Theatre in February 2015 and launch its First National Tour in September 2015.
The current Broadway cast of Beautiful includes Tony® Award-winner Jessie Mueller as ‘Carole King’, Scott J. Campbell as ‘Gerry Goffin’, Tony® Award-nominees Anika Larsen and Jarrod Spector as 'Cynthia Weil' and 'Barry Mann', Paul Anthony Stewart as 'Don Kirshner', Tony® Award-nominee Liz Larsen as 'Genie Klein', and an ensemble that includes Gisela Adisa, Ashley Blanchet, E. Clayton Cornelious, Joshua Davis, Kevin Duda, James Harkness, Aisha Jackson, Sara King, Rebecca LaChance, Douglas Lyons, Chris Peluso, Gabrielle Reid, Rashidra Scott, Sara Sheperd, Yasmeen Sulieman, Daniel Torres, Melvin Tunstall and Alan Wiggins.
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.
The creative team of Beautiful also includes Derek McLane (Set Design), Alejo Vietti (Costume Design), Peter Kaczorowski (Lighting Design), Brian Ronan (Sound Design), Charles G. LaPointe (Wig and Hair Design), Steve Sidwell (Orchestrations and Music Arrangements), Jason Howland (Music Supervision) and John Miller (Music Coordination).
Ticket prices for Beautiful range from $99 – $169 and are available for purchase via Telecharge.com, but calling 212-239-6200, or in person at the Sondheim Theatre box office. Beautiful plays the following schedule: Tuesdays – Thursdays at 7:00 PM, Wednesdays at 2:00 PM, Fridays at 8:00 PM, Saturdays at 2:00 PM & 8:00 PM, and Sundays at 3:00 PM.
Beautiful – The Carole King Musical is produced on Broadway by Paul Blake, Sony/ATV Music Publishing, Jeffrey A. Sine, Richard A. Smith, Mike Bosner, Harriet N. Leve/Elaine Krauss, Terry Schnuck, Orin Wolf, Patty Baker/Good Productions, Roger Faxon, Larry Magid, Kit Seidel, Lawrence S. Toppall, Fakston Productions/Mary Solomon, William Court Cohen, John Gore, BarLor Productions, Matthew C. Blank, Tim Hogue, Joel Hyatt, Marianne Mills, Michael J. Moritz, Jr., StylesFour Productions, Brunish/Trinchero, and Jeremiah J. Harris.
Chilina Kennedy (Carole King) just finished playing the title role in Mary Poppins at Theatre Aquarius. Her last appearance on Broadway was as Mary Magdalene in Des McAnuff’s Tony nominated production of Jesus Christ Superstar, which also had successful runs at the Stratford Festival of Canada and the La Jolla Playhouse. Chilina originated the role of Pheobe D’Ysquith in A Gentleman’s Guide To Love And Murder at Hartford Stage and the Old Globe Theater (Connecticut and San Diego Outer Critics Circle nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a musical) and starred as Sophie Sheridan in the 1st US National Tour of Mamma Mia!. Other credits include the title role in the world premiere of Evangeline and its original musical recording, the title role in Ross Petty’s Pantomime The Little Mermaid (Toronto Theatre Critics’ Award), three seasons at the Stratford Festival (including Maria in Gary Griffin’s West Side Story), three seasons at the Shaw Festival, the World Premiere of The Lord of the Rings (Toronto) and Philia in A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum (Stratford and Toronto). Chilina has performed in concert with Jason Robert Brown, Colm Wilkinson, recorded with Burt Bacharach, is a founding member of Theatre 20 (Toronto) and has won three Broadway World Awards for her performances in Kiss Me, Kate, Jesus Christ Superstar and The Grapes of Wrath. Chilina is also a singer/songwriter and has performed her original songs to a sold out crowd at The Metropolitan Room in NYC, the Stratford Festival Forum series and Springworks Independent Music Festival. www.chilinakennedy.com
Jessica Keenan Wynn (Cynthia Weil) made her NY debut this past year in the musical adaptation of the cult-classic film, Heathers, starring as Heather Chandler at New World Stages. Previously, she toured the US and Canada in the 25th Anniversary Production of Les Misérables. She was featured in Hairspray at the Hollywood Bowl, directed by Broadway veteran Jerry Mitchell, and in Life Could Be A Dream, directed by Marvelous Wonderettes creator Roger Bean. Jessica recently portrayed sex therapist Dr. Leslie Rosen in the NY workshop of Broadway-bound First Wives Club. Her TV appearances include “The Knick,” “Forever,” and her unforgettable performance at age 6 months on the classic comedy “The Golden Girls.”