By Britt Bickel

The Broadway musical about one of the most prolific female songwriters of all time has received rave reviews since opening night earlier this year, but the real-life inspiration hasn’t seen the story of her life play out on stage – until now.

Carole King made her first visit to see Beautiful, the musical that tells the story of her iconic 1971 album Tapestry, last Thursday, surprising the entire cast of her attendance. After the play ended, King made her way out on stage, surprising the cast and telling audience they “had no idea” that she was coming, according to Today.

King has admitted she wasn’t hesitant to see the play because she had no desire to relive her early years or marriage to Gerry Goffin. She told the audience that “I was working up to coming. I haven’t seen this show – this is my first night.”

She then joined the cast on stage to rally up the audience to pledge donations for the charity Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.  In return for the audiences generous donations, King sang a song with the cast live on stage.

“If you guys start pledging and giving – if you get to a number I like, we’ll all sing,” she told the audience. After successfully raising $30,000 from the audience, King joined the cast in a rousing rendition of “You’ve Got A Friend.”

Watch the performance below!


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