The Ottumwa Courier


October 9, 2013

Musicals featuring female singer-songwriters swell


Other recent shows that showcased female singer-songwriters include "Forever Dusty" about Dusty Springfield that played off-Broadway last year and "Baby It's You!" a 2011 jukebox musical on Broadway about Florence Greenberg, who managed the careers of several key figures in early rock 'n' roll.

Next month, Broadway sees the arrival of "Beautiful — the Carole King Musical," which charts King's life from age 16 to being part of a hit songwriting team with her husband, Gerry Goffin, and ends with the release of her groundbreaking solo album "Tapestry."

Playwright Douglas McGrath set King's music to the story of her relationship with her husband and fellow writers and best friends Cynthia Weil and Barry Mann. It also shines a light on a seismic shift in the music business when songwriters began writing for themselves and not just others.

Tony-nominated Jessie Mueller stars in the show, which is in San Francisco through Oct. 20. The wonderful score includes the songs "Will You Love Me Tomorrow," ''Pleasant Valley Sunday" and "(You Make Me Feel Like) a Natural Woman."

"Unlike a lot of pop music, which can be fun but is kind of like a potato chip — it's delightful and then you forget about it — in Carole and Gerry's music and certainly in Barry and Cynthia's music, too, there's such a depth of feeling that it doesn't feel like pop music," McGrath says. "I think that's why it's lasted."

McGrath says it's fun to listen to the audience do double takes upon hearing hit after hit, whispering to their seatmates in disbelief: "She wrote that, too?" That sentiment seems to be driving all the new shows about singer-songwriters: remind and educate a new generation.

Bridgewater, who has recorded songs made famous by Ella Fitzgerald and Horace Silver, is hoping to reintroduce or even introduce her audience to the remarkable Holiday.

Text Only
  • 'Game of Thrones' earns a leading 19 Emmy nods LOS ANGELES (AP) — The fantasy saga "Game of Thrones," defying the Emmy Awards' grudging respect for genre fare, emerged as the leader in the nominations announced Thursday with 19 bids, including best drama series. The meth kingpin drama "Breaking B

    July 10, 2014

  • Daytime Emmys red-carpet banter turns dark LOS ANGELES (AP) — When four social media divas were handed red-carpet and backstage interviewing duties for the Daytime Emmys, the result was anything but Hollywood magic. The women who hosted the Emmy pre-show Sunday appeared largely ignorant about

    June 24, 2014

  • 0619 OTT Los Lobos color photo -L -T -M Los Lobos headlining FAIRfest Friday

    FAIRFIELD — Three-time Grammy-winning band Los Lobos has strong ties to Iowa, and that connection will be solidified this weekend as the iconic group headlines FAIRfest while on its 40th anniversary tour. Los Lobos will perform Friday night during th

    June 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0530 OTT 5 things logo -T -M Five things to do in southeast Iowa this weekend OTTUMWA — When the weather forecast says "slight chance of thunderstorms" all weekend, you can make two sets of plans. Have a set of activities to enjoy outdoors, but have a backup plan for staying in out of the rain. 1. Outside: Get your landscaping

    May 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Author Maya Angelou dies at 86 in North Carolina NEW YORK (AP) — Maya Angelou was gratified, but not surprised by her extraordinary fortune. "I'm not modest," she told The Associated Press in 2013. "I have no modesty. Modesty is a learned behavior. But I do pray for humility, because humility comes

    May 28, 2014

  • 0524 OTT Bill Cosby color photo -L -T Bill Cosby proves he's 'Far From Finished'

    OTTUMWA — Talking to comedian Bill Cosby for just a few moments, you suddenly understand how appropriate the name of his "Far From Finished Tour" really is. One of the most legendary personalities of all time, Cosby is coming to spend an evening in O

    May 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Networks' plea to viewers: Watch now! NEW YORK (AP) — One day into the annual week where television's biggest networks reveal their future programming plans and it was clear what the buzzword was going to be: Eventize. No matter whether it's a word or not, broadcasters talked frequently

    May 19, 2014

  • Supreme Court TV on the Internet [Duplicate] High court to hear dispute about TV over Internet WASHINGTON (AP) — Thirty years after failing to convince the Supreme Court of the threat posed by home video recordings, big media companies are back and now trying to rein in another technological innovation they say threatens their financial well-b

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • MTV Movie Awards big Hollywood studio plug-fest LOS ANGELES (AP) — Last year, the MTV Movie Awards moved up its broadcast date from June to April to incorporate a summer movie plug-fest. Sunday night's show cemented that change as clips from anticipated blockbusters debuted at the madcap ceremony.

    April 14, 2014

  • 0411 OTT Five things logo -M Five things to do in southeast Iowa this weekend OTTUMWA — Music, monster trucks and memorable moments — this weekend will bring an eclectic mix of performing arts, sports, activities and informational sessions to the region. 1. Start the weekend by taking special care of your furry friends. Noah’s

    April 10, 2014 1 Photo

AP National