Audra McDonald - Rotten Tomatoes

Audra McDonald



A multi-talented performer who segued to acting out of an operatic vocal background, Audra McDonald began life in Berlin, the daughter of a U.S. Army employee father and an Affirmative Action officer mother. McDonald's dad subsequently transported the family to Virginia and then to Fresno, CA, where he taught school; meanwhile, McDonald set her eyes on show business at age nine. She sang and danced in cabaret and acted in dinner theater, and attended a junior high and high school designed expressly for youngsters interested in the performing arts. Soon, Juilliard beckoned, but even though McDonald gained acceptance at age 17, she reportedly felt less than enthusiastic during her time there -- complaining vocally about the instructors' insistence on leading her down an "operatic" path though she felt disinclined to go that way. This rectified itself when McDonald "found her way" into opera via dramatic readings of French literature. Many a stage musical followed for the blossoming diva, among them The Secret Garden, Carousel, and Master Class; throughout, she quickly attained a superior reputation for the dynamic range of her voice and the almost incomparable breadth of her vocal modulation.



McDonald transitioned to non-musical film acting in the late '90s, with such productions as the made-for-television Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters' First One Hundred Years (1999) and Mike Nichols' cable movie Wit (2001); in the years to follow, she also joined the casts of the prime-time dramas Bedford Diaries (2006) and Private Practice (2007). The following year, McDonald carried her involvement in the 2004 Broadway revival of Lorraine Hansberry's seminal play A Raisin in the Sun to the next level by appearing opposite Sean "P. Diddy" Combs and Phylicia Rashad in the 2008 TV movie of that production. In 2011 she appeared Oren Moverman's bad-cop drama Rampart. She played the Mother Abbess in NBC's Sound of Music Live in 2013.

Photos

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
No Score Yet Beauty and the Beast
  • Garderobe
2017
No Score Yet Lady Day At Emerson's Bar & Grill
  • Actor
2016
64% Ricki And The Flash
  • Maureen
2015
No Score Yet The Best of the Boston Pops
  • Actor
2015
44% The Sound Of Music Live!
  • Actor
2013
74% Rampart
  • Sarah
2012
No Score Yet Johnny Mercer: The Dream's On Me
  • Actor
2009
83% A Raisin in the Sun
  • Ruth Younger
2008
No Score Yet Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny
  • Actor
2006
40% The Best Thief in the World
  • Ruth
2004
28% It Runs in the Family
  • Sarah Langley
2003
No Score Yet Leonard Bernstein - Wonderful Town
  • Actor
2002
No Score Yet Bernstein: Wonderful Town
  • Actor
2002
80% Wit
  • Nurse Susie Monahan
2001
No Score Yet The Last Debate
  • Barbara Manning
2000
65% Cradle Will Rock
  • `Joe Worker' Singer
1999
No Score Yet Annie
  • Grace Farrell
1999
No Score Yet Having Our Say: Delany Sisters' First 100 Years
  • Bessie in her 20s
1999
49% The Object of My Affection
  • Wedding Singer
1998
No Score Yet Seven Servants
  • Actor
1996
No Score Yet Leonard Bernstein's New York
  • Actor
1996

TV

RATING TITLE CREDIT
No Score Yet Late Show With David Letterman
1993-2015
  • Guest
No Score Yet American Masters
2001
  • Appearing
No Score Yet Colbert Report
2005-2014
  • Performer
  • Guest
No Score Yet Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
1999
  • Audrey Jackson
No Score Yet The View
1997
  • Performer
  • Guest
71% Grey's Anatomy
2005
  • Naomi
No Score Yet The Late Late Show With James Corden
2015
  • Appearing
No Score Yet Sesame Street
1969
  • Zookeeper
No Score Yet Great Performances
2000
  • Actor
  • Performer
No Score Yet Live From Lincoln Center
2000
  • Actor
  • Host
  • Performer
No Score Yet Private Practice
2007-2013
  • Violet Turner Naomi Bennett
No Score Yet The Chew
2011
  • Guest
91% The Late Show With Stephen Colbert
2015
  • Guest
97% The Good Wife
2009-2016
  • Liz
No Score Yet The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
2014
  • Guest
100% The Nightly Show With Larry Wilmore
2015-2016
  • Panelist
No Score Yet In Performance at the White House
2010
  • Performer
No Score Yet Sunday Morning
2011
  • Appearing

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