Kristin Chenoweth: Belle of the Nashville Ball?

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Oklahoma-born Kristin Chenoweth may still be best known for her Broadway triumphs in Wicked and You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown, but a recurring role on FOX's Glee has brought her into more homes than any stage musical ever could. Now, with a new country album set for release on Sony Masterworks and a new TV show, Good Christian Belles, on tap, she's about to become seriously ubiquitous.

Entitled Some Lessons Learned, the CD is Chenoweth's fourth release on Sony. It features songs by top talents like Desmond Child, Diane Warren, and the singer's professed idol, Dolly Parton. "I really wanted to do this country-pop album," she told Access Hollywood, "because I grew up singing this kind of music." The album includes two songs Chenoweth penned herself, one a tribute to Parton called "What Would Dolly Do?"

Dolly would sell hundreds of thousands of records, and that's what Kristin hopes to eKristin Chenowith.jpgmulate. Crossovers into country music have had a mixed record of success, but with her acting and singing chops and true southern background, Chenoweth may have a better shot than most. And if Belles is more successful than her last TV series (the quickly forgotten Kristin), that should give CD sales a further boost.

The frequently-tweeting star has fanatically loyal fans, as a visit to her Facebook page will show. "Such a complete sweetie pie," one fan warbles, typically. But the show is about "women of faith who have their demons," says Kristin. So there'll be thorns among the roses. And after all that's what makes life - and television - interesting, isn't it?

Speaking of television, Kristin will be part of Oprah's big finale this week. Look for her on Tuesday, May 24, a blonde sprite somewhere among the tears. Then, get a taste of her new single "I Want Somebody (Bitch About)" when she performs on Live! With Regis & Kelly on June 15.

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Jon Sobel is a freelance writer, web editor, theater and music critic, marketing writer, and musician. His newest project is the blog Park Odyssey, where he is visiting and blogging every park in New York City - over a thousand of them.

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