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First Coast Connect: Broadway Legend To Perform In Jacksonville

Audra McDonald on her career and upcoming Jacksonville performance on First Coast Connect

Broadway legend Audra McDonald will perform with the Jacksonville Children’s Chorus Sunday night at the Times-Union Center.

McDonald, a Tony, Emmy and Grammy winner, spoke about her career and her upcoming performance with some of Jacksonville’s most talented youngsters in a phone interview Friday on First Coast Connect.

“The opportunity to sing with them will be a joyous one,” McDonald said.

She said she loves doing concerts because it's a chance for her to break down the fourth wall that would normally exist in a theatrical production, and being able to speak directly to the audience.

“When they came to me with the idea, I was very excited by it,” she said. “I love listening to children’s choir and chorus — I usually cry.”

McDonald was recently in the live action version of Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” as Madame de Garderobe, the opera singer of the castle and Cadenza's wife, who was cursed into a wardrobe.

“There are no words about how honored I am to be a part of that,” she said.

After McDonald finishes this tour, she said she will head back to London to debut in “Lady Day.”

“From Disney to Billie Holiday, that's a big leap,” she said.

McDonald added she will perform in concerts all over the country next year, including shows on Broadway.

News Intern Joy Kader can be reached at or on Twitter at @joykader95.

Joy Kader is a senior at the University of North Florida, pursuing a degree in communication with a concentration in multimedia journalism and production.