This past Sunday the who’s who of Broadway made their to the theater, but this time only a few coveted actors hit the stage while others waited patiently in crowd at the 68th Annual Tony Awards. One record-breaking woman, Audra McDonald, didn’t have to wait too long. McDonald, 43, won her sixth Tony Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play for her role as Billie Holiday in Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill.
So, who’s been close to McDonald’s record? Both Angela Lansbury and Julie Harris have won five Tony’s but McDonald’s sixth win puts her in the forefront and everyone at the Radio City Music Hall acknowledged such an accomplishment as they gave an extended standing ovation.
The teary-eyed actress hit the stage shaking in a red-and-white strapless gown. McDonald openly shed tears and thanked many of the greats that came before her including Ruby Dee, Lena Horne, Diahann Carroll, Maya Angelou and of course, Billie Holiday.
She also thanked her children and husband, acknowledging them as the most important people to her life. But it was her gracious thank you to her deceased parents that moved the crowd again to cheers.
“Thanks mom and dad up in heaven for disobeying doctors’ orders and not medicating their hyperactive girl, and finding out what she was into and, instead, pushing her into the theater,” said McDonald.
The leading lady now not only has more Tony Awards than veteran stars but she has won in all four major female acting categories — as Best Lead Actress and Best Featured Actress in both plays and musicals.
Congrats to this amazing actress and Mom! Interested in checking out Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill? Visit LadyDayonBroadway.com