Audra McDonald Will Return to Broadway This Fall in GYPSY; Hear Her Sing in New Trailer

Performances will begin Thursday, November 21, 2024 at the Majestic Theatre.

By: May. 29, 2024
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Ready or not, here comes Audra! BroadwayWorld has just learned that six-time Tony Award winner Audra McDonald will return to Broadway this fall, taking on what is widely regarded as the greatest role in musical theatre, “Rose” in GYPSY.

This upcoming revival will be directed by the legendary five-time Tony Award-winning Director George C. Wolfe. GYPSY features a book by Tony Award Winner Arthur Laurents, music by Tony and Academy Award Winner Jule Styne, and lyrics by Tony, Grammy, Academy Award and Pulitzer Prize Winner Stephen Sondheim.

The choreography will be by four-time Tony Award nominated Camille A. Brown.  Additional casting and creative team members will be announced at a later date.

“When we began this journey we had the specific dream of pairing Audra McDonald, our most lauded stage actress, with legendary director George C. Wolfe in a musical deemed by many to be the greatest.  Sometimes the theatre gods smile upon us.  This is one such time.  We could not be more honored to bring this particular GYPSY to the Broadway stage and also include the singular Camille A. Brown as part of our creative team," said producers Tom Kirdahy and Mara Isaacs.

Performances will begin Thursday, November 21, 2024, at Broadway’s newly renovated Majestic Theatre and will open on Thursday, December 19, 2024. The last show to play the Majestic Theatre was The Phantom of the Opera, which concluded its 35 year-run on April 16, 2023.

According to The New York Times, “Audra McDonald has become to the American theater what Meryl Streep is to film — a star of unstinting polish and versatility. Ms. McDonald embosses any production in which she appears with a good-value guarantee.” GYPSY reunites George C. Wolfe, whom The New Yorker calls “a titan of the American theatre,” with Audra McDonald, after their collaboration on the 2016 Tony-nominated production of Shuffle Along, or, The Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed. The Tony Awards Administration Committee recently announced that this June, George C. Wolfe will receive the 2024 Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in Theatre.

Tickets for GYPSY go on sale Thursday, May 30, 2024, at 10am via telecharge.com.

GYPSY is produced by Tom Kirdahy, Mara IsaacsKevin Ryan, Diane Scott Carter, Peter May, and Thomas M. Neff.

GYPSY has been lauded by critics and musical theatre fans alike as the greatest musical of all time, the ultimate back-stage tale of an ambitious stage mother fighting for her daughter’s success – while secretly yearning for her own.

Since GYPSY premiered on Broadway in 1959, starring Ethel Merman, many of the greatest performers in Broadway history have taken on the iconic role of “Rose”: Angela Lansbury in 1974, Tyne Daly in 1989, Bernadette Peters in 2003, and Patti LuPone in 2008. Now… it’s Audra’s turn.

BIOGRAPHIES

Audra McDonald is unparalleled in the breadth and versatility of her artistry as both a singer and an actor. The winner of a record-breaking six Tony Awards, two Grammy Awards and an Emmy, in 2015 she was named one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people and received the National Medal of Arts—America’s highest honor for achievement in the field—from President Barack Obama. In addition to her Tony-winning performances in Carousel, Master Class, Ragtime, A Raisin in the Sun, The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess and Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill—the role that also served as the vehicle for her Olivier Award-nominated 2017 debut in London’s West End—she has appeared on Broadway in The Secret Garden; Marie Christine (Tony nomination); Henry IV; 110 in the Shade (Tony nomination); Shuffle Along, or, The Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed; Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune (Tony nomination); and Ohio State Murders (Tony nomination).  On television, she was seen by millions as the Mother Abbess in NBC’s “The Sound of Music Live!,” won an Emmy Award for her role as host of PBS’s “Live From Lincoln Center,” and received Emmy nominations for “Wit,” “A Raisin in the Sun” and “Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill.” Having played Dr. Naomi Bennett on Shonda Rhimes’s “Private Practice” (ABC) and Liz Reddick (formerly Lawrence) on both “The Good Wife” (CBS) and “The Good Fight” (Paramount+), she may now be seen as Dorothy Scott on Julian Fellowes’s “The Gilded Age” (HBO). On film, she has appeared in Seven Servants, The Object of My Affection, Cradle Will Rock, It Runs in the Family, The Best Thief in the World, She Got Problems, Rampart, Ricki and the Flash, Disney’s live-action Beauty and the Beast, the movie-musical Hello Again, Cinergistik’s documentary Whitney Houston In Focus, the Obamas’ Higher Ground Productions’ Rustin and MGM’s Aretha Franklin biopic, Respect.  McDonald is a Juilliard-trained soprano, whose opera credits include La voix humaine and Send at Houston Grand Opera, and Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny at Los Angeles Opera, where the resulting recording earned her two Grammy Awards. She has issued five solo albums on the Nonesuch label as well as “Sing Happy” with the New York Philharmonic on Decca Gold. She also maintains a major career as a concert artist, regularly appearing on the great stages of the world and with leading international orchestras. She is a founding member of Black Theatre United, board member of Covenant House International, and prominent advocate for LGBTQIA+ rights, whose favorite roles are those performed offstage, as an activist, wife to actor Will Swenson, and mother.

George C. Wolfe’s theatre directing credits include The Iceman Cometh; Shuffle Along, or the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed (New York Drama Critics Circle Award and Drama Desk Award for Best Musical); Lucky Guy; Gary; A Sequel to Titus Andronicus, The Normal Heart (Drama Desk); Jelly’s Last Jam (Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Award); Angels in America: Millennium Approaches (Tony Award and Drama Desk) and Perestroika (Drama Desk); Bring in da Noise, Bring in da Funk (Tony and Drama League Award); Topdog/Underdog (Obie Award); Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992 (Drama Desk); Elaine Stritch at Liberty (Tony for Special Theatrical Event); The Tempest; The Wild Party; Caroline, or Change (Olivier Award Best Musical); and A Free Man of Color. From 1993-2005 Wolfe was the Producer of The Public Theater/New York Shakespeare Festival. He is the writer of the award-winning The Colored Museum, Shuffle Along, directed/adapted Spunk (Obie), and created Harlem Song for the Apollo Theatre. Wolfe directed and co-wrote the HBO film “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” as well as Lackawanna Blues, for which he earned The Directors Guild Award, a National Board of Review Award, a Christopher Award, and the Humanitas Prize.  For Netflix, he directed “Ma Rainey's Black Bottom”, which was nominated for 5 Academy Awards, and most recently “Rustin” (Gotham Award). He is the Chief Creative Officer of the Center for Civil and Human Rights and from 2009-2017 served on The President's Committee for the Arts and The Humanities. Additional awards include the PEN Mike Nichols Writing Performance Award, Actors Equity Paul Robeson Award, Society of Directors and Choreographers Mr. Abbott and Callaway Awards, the Dramatists Guild Hull-Warriner Award, the New Dramatists Outstanding Career Achievement Award, the NAACP Lifetime Achievement Award, the Lambda Liberty Award, the Spirit of the City Award, the Brendan Gil Prize, the Distinguished Alumni Award from NYU, a Princess Grace Award, the Monte Cristo Award and was inducted in the Theatre Hall of Fame. Wolfe was named a Library Lion by the New York Public Library and a living landmark by the New York Landmarks Conservancy. The Tony Awards Administration Committee recently announced that this June, George C. Wolfe will receive the 2024 Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in Theatre.

Camille A. Brown.  Four-time Tony Award nominee, including a current nomination for her choreography in Hell’s Kitchen on Broadway, is a prolific Black female choreographer who in 2022, made her Broadway directorial debut for the Broadway revival of for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf, making her the first Black woman to direct and choreograph a Broadway play since Katherine Dunham in 1955. The production received seven Tony Award nominations including Best Direction of a Play and Best Choreography for Brown. The New York Times proclaimed the production "triumphant." The same season, at The Metropolitan Opera, Camille became the first Black artist to direct a mainstage production, co-directing alongside James Robinson on Terence Blanchard’s Fire Shut Up in My Bones (2021), which she also choreographed. Fire was triumphantly brought back to the MET again this 2024 spring season. Camille also choreographed Porgy & Bess in 2020 and Terence Blanchard’s Champion, which premiered April 2023, both at The MET Opera. Camille made her Broadway choreography debut with the critically acclaimed revival of Once on This Island, followed by Choir Boy for MTC. She continues to be the artistic director and choreographer for her own company, Camille A Brown and Dancers and this summer will premiere a new piece, the highly anticipated “I AM” at Jacobs Pillow. Most recently, Brown won the Chita Rivera Award for outstanding choreography and earned a Drama Desk nomination and her fourth Tony Award nomination for her choreography of the Broadway hit, Hell’s Kitchen, the new Alicia Keys musical which has garnered 13 Tony Award nominations.





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