Sara Bareilles has been tapped to star in the musical Waitress for a limited engagement. The singer-songwriter composed the music and lyrics for the Broadway hit based off the 2007 film of the same name.
Bareilles will take over for current star Jessie Mueller on March 31st for a 10-week stint as Jenna, a pie-making prodigy and waitress trying to get out of an abusive relationship. Mueller’s final performance will take place on March 26th.
“Waitress has turned out to be one of the great, true loves of my life, and they simply can’t get rid of me,” Bareilles said in a statement. “This show changed my life in so many ways, and I feel great privilege in joining our beloved cast and crew who make me laugh and cry every time I watch the show.”
Before the musical premiered, Bareilles had released the album What’s Inside: Songs From Waitress, which previewed the show’s music as sung by Bareilles and special guest Jason Mraz. Last summer, she starred as Ariel in Hollywood Bowl’s production of The Little Mermaid alongside Rebel Wilson and Darren Criss.
In an interview with Rolling Stone, Bareilles had revealed that she had moved to New York City in 2012 to pursue work on-stage, having auditioned for a production of Stephen Sondheim’s Into the Woods. The role ended up being given to Mueller before the pair began working together on Waitress. “It was a cosmic hug, I think,” she explained. Bareilles’ score for Waitress earned her Tony, Grammy and Drama Desk nominations.