Jennifer Nettles is headed back to the Broadway stage to play Jenna, the leading role in Waitress.

Waitress is a musical by Sara Bareilles, and Nettles was a big fan before joining the cast.

"There are so many layers to Waitress that make it so meaningful to me,” Nettles tells People. "It is heartwarming, heart-breaking at times, and absolutely heart-inspiring."

"I’m thrilled to be able to finally get to wear the apron," the Sugarland star adds.

The role of Jenna has previously been played by Jessie Mueller, Katharine MchPhee, Jordin Sparks, Nicolette Robinson, Shoshana Bean and, most recently, Bareilles herself.

Get our free mobile app

Bareilles' run as Jenna will end on Oct. 17, and on Oct. 19 Nettles will take on the role for the first time. Though new to Waitress, the county singer is not new to the Broadway scene.

"My love of musical theater and this Broadway community is no secret,” Nettles says. In 2015, the "Who Says You Can’t Go Home" singer starred in Chicago as Roxie Hart.

Joining the cast of Waitress is a full-circle moment for Nettles, as she recalls Broadway getting shut down due to the pandemic just as she wrapped up her last album.

"The last note I sang for recording Always Like New actually happened to be on March 12, 2020, the day of the Broadway shutdown. I walked out of the vocal booth and all of our phones lit up and said that Broadway was officially closing," she recalls. "It was like, 'What is going on?' So being able to put this album out to celebrate this beautiful community, and then to get this telephone call on top of it? It's checking all the boxes."

See the Top 50 Country Duets of All Time!