National Tour of “Beautiful – The Carole King Musical” to launch in Providence!
‘Beautiful — the Carole King Musical’ to start 2015 national tour in Providence
Providence has become a favorite spot for Broadway productions to kick off their tours.
By Andy Smith, The Providence Journal
PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Hit Broadway show “Beautiful — the Carole King Musical” will start its national tour at the Providence Performing Arts Center in September 2015.
“Beautiful,” which won a Tony Award for Jessie Mueller, who played King, will be at PPAC Sept. 15 to 20.
Producers announced the tour Friday morning in England, where they also unveiled plans for a London production of “Beautiful,” scheduled to begin in February.
PPAC president J.L. “Lynn” Singleton initially said that a cast and crew of between 100 and 150 will be in Providence for five or six weeks before the show, although not all at the same time. On Friday, PPAC issued a statement saying that “the entire company, crew, creative team and producers will spend six weeks in Providence … bringing in excess of 60 people to town.”
Singleton estimated that the production will bring between $8 million and $10 million in spending to the state’s economy.
“Beautiful” focuses on King’s early years, when she and her husband, Gerry Goffin, were a songwriting team churning out hits for the Drifters, the Shirelles, Little Eva and more. By the end of the show, King and Goffin have split, and she is on the verge of her immensely successful solo career.
“Commercially, this is the strongest thing I’ve seen in New York since ‘Jersey Boys,’” Singleton said. “It’s the ‘Jersey Boys’ for women…. I think it will do huge business on the road. I think it’s a slam-dunk on the road.”
Providence has become a favorite spot for Broadway productions to kick off their tours. “Beautiful” will be the second show to begin its national run in Providence during the 2014-2015 season, the other being “Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella.”
Last season, PPAC was the launching pad for three tours: “Evita,” “Once,” and “Phantom of the Opera.”
Singleton ticked off several reasons why tours start here:
One is proximity to Broadway. Providence is about three hours from New York by Acela train, so if there’s a problem, a show’s creative team can be here in a hurry.
Providence is considered a good theater market. At 3,087 seats, PPAC is a comparatively large theater with a strong Broadway subscriber base, so chances are a tour can start off making money.
The building was renovated to handle big Broadway productions in 1995, and PPAC’s staff and crew have plenty of experience.
“We can solve their problems,” Singleton said. “This is not our first rodeo.”
The “Beautiful” tour can qualify for a Rhode Island tax credit of up to 25 percent of the money spent in the state under an expansion of the state’s motion-picture tax credit that passed the General Assembly in 2012.
For more information, please visit The Providence Journal.