Audra McDonald returns to Broadway as lead in ‘Gypsy’

Everything seems to be looking up roses for Audra McDonald.

The Tony Award-winning actress has been cast in an upcoming production of the Broadway classic “Gypsy,” according to a news release Wednesday. McDonald will play the show’s main character Rose.

The Broadway revival is directed by George C. Wolfe and choreographed by Camille A. Brown.

“When we embarked on this journey, we had the specific dream of pairing Audra McDonald, our most acclaimed stage actress, with legendary director George C. Wolfe in a musical that many consider the greatest,” said producers Tom Kirdahy and Mara Isaacs in a position. “Sometimes the theater gods smile on us. This is one of those moments. We couldn’t be more honored to bring this particular ‘Gypsy’ to the Broadway stage.”

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Inspired by the life story of burlesque entertainer Gypsy Rose Lee, “Gypsy” tells the story of a ruthless showbiz mother determined to help her daughters become stars on the Vaudeville stage, according to The Shubert Organization. Known for songs such as ‘Everything’s Coming Up Roses’, ‘Let Me Entertain You’ and ‘You Gotta Get a Gimmick’, the iconic musical consists of music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and a book by Arthur Laurents.

The character of Rose was created by Ethel Merman in the original 1959 production of the show and has since been played by Angela Lansbury, Tyne Daly, Bernadette Peters, Patti LuPone and Imelda Staunton.

“It’s one of the great roles in musical theater, and I always thought maybe one day I could try it,” McDonald told The New York Times in an interview published Wednesday. “It scares the hell out of me, but I definitely feel old enough now, and now that I’ve experienced motherhood, maybe I have what it takes to dive in and discover her and all that she is.”

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“Gypsy” begins performances at the Majestic Theater in New York City on November 21 and officially opens to the public on December 19.

Tickets for the show go on sale Thursday at 10 a.m. Fans can visit for more information.

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