Favorite ThingsMultiple Tony Winner Audra McDonald Shares Her Theatregoing ExperiencesPlaybill.com's new feature series, Their Favorite Things, asks members of the theatre community to share the Broadway performances that most affected them as part of the audience.
This week we spotlight the choices of five-time Tony Award-winning actress Audra McDonald, who is currently celebrating the release of her newest solo recording, "Go Back Home" (Nonesuch Records), with a multi-city concert tour that continues through December.
"I have never seen or experienced such presence onstage, and I got to see it close up. When Zoe looked at me on stage, I felt like she looked right into the very depth of my soul and immediately knew all of my secrets."
"The show had fantastic performances by everyone, but Danny broke my heart. The moment at the end of the show when he attempted to put his hand around Sally's waist but takes it away at the last minute actually made me audibly gasp out of the sheer pain in that gesture."
"I know Phylicia well and adore her, and every night when she got on that stage and became Lena Younger, she didn't disappear so much as she did grow these roots — like an enormous tree that would reach down through the stage, the theatre, the concrete of the city and bore down into the earth and your soul."
"Her performance is one of the only times I have ever lost emotional control as an audience member. When she cried out the words Bountiful...I felt my heart burst, and I started to sob, and I didn't stop until I was across the street at a restaurant after the performance about an hour later. (Ask anyone who was with me that night. It is absolutely true.)"
"Heard this legend on a million cast albums, but I had never seen her live. Seeing her live put me over the edge in my fandom of Chita. Her performance of 'Where You Are' was like seeing a lightning bolt harnessed on a stage. Made me truly understand the word living legend."