DeAnne Stewart admits it’s been a little different performing in Beautiful: The Carole King Musical this week at Rochester’s Auditorium Theatre.
The Greece Athena High School graduate is back home as a member of the ensemble with the off Broadway touring company of Beautiful with performances through Sunday.
“It was great!” Stewart said of the show’s performance Tuesday. “It was awesome. It was so fun after to seeing people I haven’t seen in so long and they were so warm and loving.”
Stewart said she was a bit older when she first caught the acting bug. “It was a little later for me than I think for most people I encountered in college and even in the business in New York. It was the summer after my junior year, so summer before my senior year of high school. I played my first lead role in a show and I was like – wow, maybe I can do this!”
Performing the iconic songs of Carole King has been a joy for Stewart, who said the show offers a look at how King became a superstar. “So ‘Beautiful’ is the story of Carole King, her life, her and Gerry Goffin – her husband at the time. Them, along with Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil – it’s like you’ve got these two couples that are kind of dueling a bit and they become great friends through their competition. But they’re creating music that really set the scene for the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s – that old school rock and pop!”
Being a part of Beautiful and touring the country has been uniquely rewarding for Stewart. “After my career started I was in New York for a little bit doing a couple of things, and then I went and did cruise ships,” she explained. “And so it was like I was doing all of this traveling around the world, which was amazing and a great experience in my early 20’s – so invaluable – but then I realized, I’ve not seen much of America. So it was really exciting to get this and be able to see a lot of the country, a lot of cities I have never been to and probably some I never would have really thought to go to, so it’s been great.”
You can see the hometown star on stage through Sunday in Rochester. For tickets and more information visit the Auditorium Theatre Box Office or go to RBTL.org.