Friday, April 5, 2024

Beautiful: The Carole King Musical To Play Paramount Theatre April 24-June 16, 2024

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Tiffany Topol returns to the Paramount stage as Carole King in 
Paramount Theatre's Beautiful: The Carole King Musical
All advance photos by Amy Nelson

Paramount Theatre 
in downtown Aurora is tuning up for 
Beautiful: The Carole King Musical
April 24-June 16, 2024

Here at ChiIL Mama and ChiIL Live Shows, we've seen Beautiful: The Carole King Musical quite a few times over the years, and it never fails to send chills of delight up our spines. We can't wait to see Paramount Theatre's take on this iconic musical. With their world class reputation, whether you're a lifelong Carole King fan or just discovering her life and legacy, Paramount's production is sure to stun. This is an excellent show for making multigenerational memories. Don't miss this!

Paramount Theatre’s 2023-24 season finale is the Broadway smash hit Beautiful: The Carole King Musical. Nominated for seven Tony Awards, with two wins, plus a Grammy for Best Musical Theater Album, Paramount will pull out all the stops in this season-finale jukebox musical celebration of one our most beloved music icons ever. 

Tiffany Topol, Jeff-nominated as Girl in Paramount's 2018 acclaimed production of Once, returns to the Paramount stage as Carole King. 

Beautiful: The Carole King Musical runs April 24-June 16 at 
Paramount Theatre, 23 E. Galena Blvd. in downtown Aurora.

Tickets: or (630) 896-6666
From teenage songwriter to the 
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Beautiful: The Carole King Musical 
celebrates the inspiring true story of a 1970s pop music icon
April 24-June 16 at Paramount Theatre

Paramount Theatre’s Beautiful: The Carole King Musical will feature (from left)
Tiffany Topol as Carole King. Jim Corti and Johanna McKenzie Miller will direct. 

Carole King made more than beautiful music. She wrote the soundtrack to a generation with indelible songs like “You’ve Got a Friend,” “Natural Woman,” “Late,” “I Feel the Earth Move,” “Will You Love Me Tomorrow” and “So Far Away.”

Performances are April 24-June 16. Opening Night is Friday, May 3 at 8 p.m. For tickets and information, visit, call (630) 896-6666.
Tiffany Topol plays Carole King in Paramount's Beautiful: The Carole King Musical.
Before she was the Carole King we know today, she was a young songwriter from Brooklyn trying to make a name for herself. Beautiful tells the inspiring true story of her remarkable rise to stardom with her husband and songwriting partner, Gerry Goffin, and how she went on to become one of the most successful singers, songwriters and musicians in contemporary music history. 

Paramount’s new production of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical will be directed by Paramount Theatre Artistic Director Jim Corti and Johanna McKenzie Miller, in her Paramount directorial debut.

Returning to Paramount in the title role of Carole King is Tiffany Topol, a multi-talented singer, songwriter, producer and performer based in New York and Chicago. Paramount audiences will recall Topol for her Jeff-nominated performance in 2018 as Girl in Once. Topol’s other credits include the first National Tours of Xanadu and OnceSweet Charity at Writers’ Theatre, Shining Lives at Northlight Theatre and Eastland at Lookingglass. 
The principal cast for Paramount’s Beautiful features (from left) Tiffany Topol as Carole King, C.J. Blaine Eldred as Gerry Goffin, Rebecca Hurd as Cynthia Weil, Christopher Kale Jones as Barry Mann, Ian Paul Custer as Donny Kirshner and Laura T. Fisher as Genie Klein. 

The principal cast also features C.J. Blaine Eldred as Gerry Goffin, Rebecca Hurd as Cynthia Weil, Christopher Kale Jones as Barry Mann, Ian Paul Custer as Donny Kirshner and Laura T. Fisher as Genie Klein. The ensemble (at press time) includes Averis AndersonMarta BadyCorey BarlowCorey BarrowLydia BurkeAriana BurksMichaela DukesJared David Michael GrantConor JordanClare KennedyKevin KuskaDonna LoudenYasir MuhammadLuke NowakowskiColleen PerryCalvin Scott RobertsAbby C. SmithMatt Thinnes and Shelbi Voss.

Per usual, Paramount has assembled a stellar design and production team to create a night of Beautiful theater including Kenny Ingram, choreographer; Kory Danielson, music director and conductor; Jeffrey D. Kmiec, scenic designer; Theresa Ham, costume designer; Greg Hofmann, lighting designer; Adam Rosenthalsound designer; Katie Cordts, wig, hair and makeup designer; Jesse Gaffney, properties designer; Ethan Deppe, electronic music designer; Erin Barnett, assistant choreographer; Celia Villacres, associate music director and associate conductor; Jaci Entwisle, stage manager; and Madeline M. Scott and Lanita VanderSchaaf, assistant stage managers.

Tiffany Topol plays Carole King in Paramount's Beautiful: The Carole King Musical.

Times, Dates and Ticket Information

Beautiful: The Carole King Musical starts previews Wednesday, April 24 at 7 p.m. Opening Night is Friday, May 3 at 8 p.m. Performances run through June 16: Wednesdays at 1:30 p.m. and 7 p.m.; Thursdays at 7 p.m.; Fridays at 8 p.m.; Saturdays at 3 p.m. and 8 p.m.; Sundays at 1 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. Run time is approximately 2 hours 30 minutes with intermission. 

Paramount Theatre is located at 23 E. Galena Blvd. in downtown Aurora. For tickets and information, visit, call (630) 896-6666, or stop by the Paramount box office, Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and until show time on show days. For group discounts, contact Melissa Striedl, or (630) 723-2461. 

For the latest updates, follow @paramountaurora on Facebook and Instagram, and Paramount Theatre on LinkedIn

Pay What You Can Performances

Paramount will offer two Pay What You Can performances of BeautifulThursday, April 25 at 7 p.m., and Saturday, April 27 at 3 p.m. Both days, starting at 10 a.m., visit the Paramount box office in-person to request tickets. Limit four per person. Subject to availability. See for details. 

Access Services

Paramount offers assistive listening devices free of charge at all performances. Check in at the coat room before the show to borrow a listening device.

Paramount will offer American Sign Language interpretation on Friday, June 7 at 8 p.m. and open captioning on Wednesday, June 12 at 1:30 p.m.

If you require wheelchair or special seating or other assistance, please contact the box office at (630) 896-6666 or in advance.

Tiffany Topol returns to the Paramount stage in
the title role of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical
Behind the scenes of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical

Pop music would be very different without the contributions of Carole King, who at age 17 wrote her first #1 song with Gerry Goffin, “Will You Love me Tomorrow,” for the Shirelles. The dozens of hits Goffin and King wrote during this period became legendary, but it was 1971’s “Tapestry” that took King to the pinnacle, speaking to her contemporaries and providing a spiritual background to the decade. More than 400 of her compositions have been recorded by over 1,000 artists, resulting in 100 hit singles and six Grammys. She was recognized in 2015 by the Kennedy Center Honors for her unparalleled influence on American culture. King was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2021.

Beautiful: The Carole King Musical features a book by Douglas McGraththat tells the inspiring true story of King’s early life and career, using songs that she wrote, often together with Gerry Goffin, and other contemporary songs by Barry MannCynthia WeilPhil Spector and others. Orchestrations, vocal and incidental music arrangements are by Steve Sidwall

The original production of Beautiful received its world premiere in October 2013 at the Curran Theatre, San Francisco, with direction by Marc Bruni and choreography by Josh Prince, starring Chicago’s own Jessie Mueller. It debuted on Broadway in January 2014 at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre, earning seven Tony nominations and two wins, including a Tony for Mueller for best leading actress in a musical for her portrayal of Carole King. 

About Paramount’s upcoming production, Artistic Director Jim Corti said, “Collaborating with co-director Johanna McKenzie Miller, choreographer Kenny Ingram, and music director Kory Danielson, we’re set up for singer/songwriter, and music producer herself, Tiffany Topol, to star and lead us into a nuanced reveal of the great Carole King." 

"From her little known personal story and trailblazing professional career, from her start as a 17-year-old songwriter for hire to her triumphant Carnegie Hall concert in 1971, the year she was the first woman ever to win four Grammy Awards for her record breaking album 'Tapestry,' which remained the bestseller by a female artist for a quarter century. Take a seat and ride with us for her rise to self realization as a pop music powerhouse while continuing her work and desire toward life as a wife and mother. As she honors and owns her fearless and true gift, witness the start of how Carole King becomes one of the most celebrated and iconic singer/songwriters of all time!”

Paramount Artistic Director Jim Corti will co-direct Paramount’s production of Beautiful. Corti inaugurated Paramount’s Broadway Series with President and CEO Tim Rater in fall 2011 with the critically acclaimed My Fair Lady and a subscriber base of 12,500 patrons. In 2015, Paramount’s Broadway Series became Jeff Award eligible. Since then, Paramount has garnered 115 nominations with 29 wins, including three consecutive Best Large Musical awards for Les MisérablesWest Side Story and Sweeney Todd. Corti helmed all three, and won Best Director for two of them, Les Misérables and Sweeney Todd. Corti also directed Paramount’s Fiddler on the RoofMiss SaigonRENTThe Who’s TommyOklahoma!Mamma Mia!Million Dollar QuartetOnce, The ProducersNewsiesGroundhog Day: The MusicalNext to Normal, and co-directed Into the Woods and Fun Home. A Broadway veteran, he appeared in the original New York casts of Ragtime and Candide, joined the long running A Chorus Line, and toured nationally in UrinetownCabaret and Bob Fosse’s Dancin’. Other highlights include being the only director to have two productions in the same year in the Chicago Tribune’s 2009 list of 10 Best Shows for Drury Lane’s Cabaret and Writers Theatre’s Oh, Coward! He remains the sole honoree to have won Jeff Awards as an actor (Marriott’s Grand Hotel), choreographer (Drury Lane’s Singin’ in the Rain) and director (Paramount’s Sweeney Todd and Les Misérables, Drury Lane’s Sweet Charity and Northlight’s Blues in the Night). In addition to Beautiful, Corti is also directing Paramount’s BOLD Series spring 2024 revival of A Streetcar Named Desire with Elizabeth Swanson, March 13-April 21 at Paramount’s Copley Theatre.

Johanna McKenzie Miller (co-director) is making her Paramount debut with Beautiful. Most recently she directed Shrek at Music Theatre Works. Other directing credits include Steel Magnolias (Jeff Award, Best Ensemble Play-Large), The 39 Steps and Shrek (TYA) at Drury Lane Theatre; Kiss Me, KateThe Wizard of Oz (TYA), Junie B. Jones (TYA) and Elephant & Piggie’s We Are in a Play! (TYA) at Marriott Theatre; A Peculiar Inheritance and Romance en Route, the 91st and 92nd Annual Waa-Mu shows at Northwestern University; How to Lobster with Steppenwolf LookOut series, and Shrew’d! with First Folio Theatre. McKenzie Miller is the co-founder and artistic director of Lombard Children’s Theater Workshop.


Old Second National Bank is the sponsor of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical. Paramount Theatre Broadway Season sponsors are the Dunham FoundationBMOComEdIllinois Arts Council and the City of Aurora

Also playing this spring in Paramount’s BOLD Series:

A Streetcar Named Desire
March 13-April 21, 2024
By Tennessee Williams
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Drama
Part of the BOLD Series, performed in Paramount’s intimate, 165-seat Copley Theatre

New Orleans. The heat is sweltering, the liquor flows, and the secrets are thick as humidity. Pull up a chair and join the high-stakes game of cards. To your left is Stella Kowalski, married, loves her husband and will do anything for him. On your right is Stanley Kowalski, hard drinking, hard playing and hard fists that get used a lot. Across from you is Blanche DuBois, vulnerable, alone and ready to break. Streetcar confronts us with the tenuous relationship between reality and illusion, hope and despair and the brutal battle for beauty and tenderness when the world feels like it’s conspiring against you.
For tickets and information, visit, call (630) 896-6666, or visit the Paramount box office, 23 E. Galena Blvd. in downtown Aurora, Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and until show time on show days. 

A Streetcar Named Desire is sponsored by My Place Hotels. Paramount’s BOLD Series is sponsored by Old National Bank.

About Paramount Theatre

Paramount Theatre, 23 E. Galena Blvd., is the center for performing arts in Aurora, the second largest city in Illinois. The beautiful, 1,843-seat theater, graced with a strong 1930s Art Deco influence and original Venetian décor, nationally known for its high-quality productions, superb acoustics and historic grandeur, has been downtown Aurora’s anchor attraction since 1931.

Since launching its own Broadway Series in 2011, Paramount has amassed more than 37,000 subscribers, making it the largest subscription house in the U.S. 

For over 50 years, the Joseph Jefferson Awards has recognized excellence in Chicago area theater. Paramount has been honored to earn 115 Jeff nominations and 29 wins over the last eight years of eligibility, including six Jeff Awards in 2022 for Kinky Boots, including Best Musical-Large, Paramount’s fourth win in that category following Sweeney Todd (2017), West Side Story(2016) and Les Misérables (2015). 

Paramount Theatre is one of four live performance venues programmed and managed by the Aurora Civic Center Authority (ACCA). Paramount’s newly-renovated “sister stage” is the 165-seat Copley Theatre, home to Paramount’s BOLD Series, across the street in North Island Center. ACCA also programs and manages Stolp Island Theatre, an immersive theater experience opening on the Fox River in July 2024, the Paramount School of the Arts, and RiverEdge Park, downtown Aurora’s 6,000-seat outdoor summer concert venue.

Paramount Theatre continues to expand its artistic and institutional boundaries under the guidance of Tim Rater, President and CEO, Aurora Civic Center Authority; Jim Corti, Artistic Director, Paramount Theatre; a dedicated Board of Trustees and a devoted staff of live theater and music professionals.

For the latest updates, visit or follow @paramountaurora on Facebook and Instagram, and Paramount Theatre on LinkedIn.           

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