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A Streetcar Named Desire at Williamstown Theatre Festival

UPDATE: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Williamstown Theatre Festival will not be able to move forward with the 2020 summer season as planned. In lieu of in-person performances, the Festival will produce the 2020 season on Audible’s streaming platform. Click here for more information about the 2020 Williamstown Theatre Festival season on Audible.

 

This summer, Audra McDonald returns to the Williamstown Theatre Festival to star in Tennessee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire.

Directed by Robert O’Hara, the American classic features Audra in her role debut of Blanche DuBois alongside Carla Gugino as Stella and Bobby Cannavale as Stanley in this story of an emotionally charged relationship between two sisters. Haunted by a troubled past, Blanche seeks refuge with Stella and Stanley in New Orleans, where she wrestles with the nature of her sister’s husband, her sister’s denial, and her own tumultuous mind.

Performances run from June 30-July 19 on the festival’s Main Stage in Williamstown, Massachusetts. Click here for tickets.

Audra McDonald smiles with her head tilted to the side, posing in front of a white background.

2020 CSA Apple Award

On January 30, Audra McDonald will receive the Marion Dougherty New York Apple Award at the 35th Artios Awards. This award, presented by the Casting Society of America (CSA), recognizes individuals who have made a significant impact on the New York entertainment industry through their collaboration with casting directors. The award ceremonies will be held in Los Angeles, New York City, and London.

In addition, Oscar winner Geena Davis will be honored with the Lynn Stalmaster Award for Career Achievement from the CSA. Deborah Aquila, Andrew Femenella, and Andy Pryor are also among the award honorees.

Click here for more information and tickets to the NYC event.

Audra McDonald sits in front of a multi-colored stone wall, wearing a black top and faintly smiling while looking toward the camera.

“Ragtime” in Concert: A tribute to Marin Mazzie

On April 27, Audra McDonald reprises the role of Sarah in a concert version of the Tony-nominated musical Ragtime at Minskoff Theatere on Broadway. Telling the story of immigrants and minorities struggling to make it in America, Ragtime deals with issues such as racism and income inequalityAudra joins two-time Tony winner Brian Stokes Mitchell in a concert dedicated to the late Marin Mazzie, with whom Audra and Brian performed as original cast members of the show. Proceeds from Ragtime benefit The Actors Fund, an organization that strives to provide safety nets to performing artists and entertainers in America. Stay tuned for tickets to go on sale in 2020.

2019 Kennedy Center Honors

This Sunday, CBS broadcasts the 2019 Kennedy Center Honors which celebrate the lifetime achievements of five artists: Michael Tilson Thomas; Linda Ronstadt; Sally Field; Earth, Wind & Fire; and the first-ever TV show to receive the award, Sesame Street.

Hosted by former honoree LL Cool J, the program features a variety of performances to celebrate the honorees. Carrie Underwood sings Linda Ronstadt’s “Blue Bayou,” Sesame Street puppets accompany country singer Thomas Rhett, and Audra McDonald performs Bernstein’s “Somewhere” alongside members of the New World Symphony and Michael Tilson Thomas’ former student, conductor Teddy Abrams. Tune in this Sunday at 8/7c to watch the 2019 Kennedy Center Honors on CBS.

Audra McDonald sits in front of a multi-colored stone wall, wearing a black top and faintly smiling while looking toward the camera.

Audra to Appear in Aretha Franklin Biopic

Audra McDonald returns to the big screen, where she stars as Aretha Franklin’s mother in the upcoming biopic Respect. The film, which is scheduled to hit theaters in January 2021, also features Jennifer Hudson as Franklin, Marlon Wayans as Ted White, Forest Whitaker as Franklin’s father, and Mary J. Blige as fellow legend Dinah Washington. The award-winning cast will be directed by Tony Award nominee Liesl Tommy, and will feature many of the songs that catapulted Franklin to stardom including “Respect,” “I Say a Little Prayer,” and “Think.”

Covenant House Sleep Out

On August 19, Audra participated in Covenant House’s Sleep Out: Stage & Screen along with over 100 members of the Broadway and film communities. This is Audra’s sixth time sleeping outside on the streets of New York as an act of solidarity with the 4.2 million youths who experience homelessness each year. Audra, who has served on the Covenant House board since 2014, spent the evening participating in breakout sessions, a song circle, and other programs, getting to know young people whom Covenant House has helped. She was joined by her daughter Zoe—along with stars such as Rachel Brosnahan and Zachary Levi—for the second part of the event: a night spent sleeping on the street. The Sleep Out doubles as a fundraiser; in total, Monday night’s Sleep Out raised nearly $400,000 to combat youth homelessness.