THOUGHTS: Father Comes Home from the Wars (Part 1, 2 & 3) at The Public Theater

Louis Cancelmi and Sterling K. Brown (Photo credit: Joan Marcus)

Louis Cancelmi and Sterling K. Brown (Photo credit: Joan Marcus)

After several weeks of seeing shows, I think I’ve finally found my new favorite this season (and I hope it’ll be yours, too). Making good theater is a tough game, but I’m pretty confident that Suzan-Lori Parks, Jo Bonney, and The Public Theater (in tandem with A.R.T)  have figured out how to win it this season with Parks’ latest play Father Comes Home From the Wars (Part 1, 2 & 3). In this epic, which is reminiscent of  Homer’s The Odyssey, Parks takes us back to the Civil War when the hunger for freedom was at it’s pinnacle and black slaves were forced to fight for the Confederacy. Our hero of these plays, Hero (played by Sterling K. Brown) wants to achieve freedom like the next slave, only he wants to earn it in what he considers the right way (i.e. not running away). Continue reading

TONY TUESDAY: Audra McDonald

Audra McDonald::sigh:: What can you possibly say about this amazing woman! For those who have yet to be introduced to the five time Tony award-winning legend…here we go!

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Audra Ann McDonald has appeared on the stage in both musicals and dramas, such as Carousel, Ragtime, A Raisin in the Sun, and (most recently) Porgy and Bess. Amongst all of her shows she also maintains an active concert and recording career throughout the U.S. Audra was born in Berlin, Germany and raised in my home state of California! Currently she is hosting ‘Live from Lincoln Center’ on PBS as well as appearing on the TV show Private Practice.

I had the pleasure of meeting Audra in 2011, thanks to the ZACH Theatre, when Porgy and Bess was still at the American Repertory Theatre in MA. Before this I had always been a fan of hers, not only for her talent, but also for her part in paving the way for actresses of color in the non traditional casting arena. Meeting her was a dream come true. She was incredibly kind and humble. Even at curtain call for her last performance in MA you could tell she was so thankful to be both sharing the stage with amazing company, and performing for an equally thankful audience. Maybe we’ll even get to interview her on here someday!

Fun Fact: McDonald became a three-time Tony Award winner by age 28. She now shares the record for most Tonys won by an actor with Julie Harris and Angela Lansbury.

Keep reading for video of Audra doing what she does best-performing and winning Tonys!

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