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On Stage: 'Beautiful' And 'Rock Opera!'


If you were alive and cognizant in 1971 and 1972, you probably owned the album “Tapestry,” by Carole King, or you knew someone who did.

It still holds the record for most consecutive weeks at number one by a female solo artist, and ranks among the best-selling albums of all time, and its songs have been covered by the likes of James Taylor, Barbra Streisand, and Aretha Franklin. The story of Carol Klein who grew into Carole King, the songwriter so talented that she could not be denied, is the subject for the jukebox musical Beautiful

The musical includes tunes from other songwriters of the time, including the team of Cynthia Weil and Barry Mann. King joins forces with lyricist Gerry Goffin, professionally and personally, and the plot of the musical sets up a rivalry between the two teams. Ultimately, though, this is about one person, and the show leaves all the rest behind as King struggles to rebuild after splitting with Goffin, and to recreate her life by recording her songs herself.

Beautiful is on stage at Century II Concert Hall, May 15 through May 19. 

And Wichita Grand Opera wants to rock your operatic world with a selection of music from such rock operas as RENT, Elton John’s Aida, Miss Saigon, and Jesus Christ Superstar. Enjoy the show, Rock Opera!, on the plaza at Bradley Fair, on May 30.

Sanda Moore Coleman received an MFA in creative writing from Wichita State University in 1991. Since then, she has been the arts and community editor for The Martha's Vineyard Times, a teaching fellow at Harvard University, and an assistant editor at Image. In 2011, she received the Maureen Egan Writers Exchange prize for fiction from Poets & Writers magazine. She has spent more than 30 years performing, reviewing, and writing for theatre.