Audra McDonald is coming full circle: The Juilliard graduate will head back to her old stomping ground to host the popular PBS series Live From Lincoln Center. The five-time Tony winner is set to introduce seven live broadcasts this season, making her debut on the December 13 broadcast of “The Richard Tucker Opera Gala.” McDonald will both host and perform in the New York Philharmonic’s New Year’s Eve Gala, “One Singular Sensation: Celebrating Marvin Hamlisch.”
“I grew up watching Live From Lincoln Center and Beverly Sills, the great soprano who used to regularly host the series, was such an inspiration to me,” McDonald said in a statement. “Ever since I moved to New York to attend The Juilliard School, I’ve spent so much of my life at Lincoln Center that I consider it my home away from home."
McDonald is uniquely qualified to host Live From Lincoln Center, having appeard on the program numerous times, including a concert of Sondheim’s Passion, with Patti LuPone, “Audra McDonald and Friends: Build a Bridge” and “Audra McDonald Sings the Movies.” On Broadway, she has won Tonys for Porgy and Bess, A Raisin in the Sun, Master Class, Ragtime and Carousel. She starred in ABC's Private Practice before returning to New York to resume her theatrical career.