Audra McDonald Sets Record With Sixth Tony Award Win
Actress Audra McDonald snagged her sixth Tony Award on Sunday night for her role as the legendary Billie Holiday in Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill on Broadway.
She makes history as the the only actor to win six Tony Awards and the first person to win Tonys in all four acting categories.
“I want to thank my mom and dad up in heaven for disobeying the doctor’s orders and not medicating their hyperactive daughter and finding out what she’s into instead,” Audra began her emotional acceptance speech.
She continued: “I am standing on Lena Horne’s shoulders. I am standing on Maya Angelou’s shoulders. I am standing on Diahann Carroll and Ruby Dee, and most of all, Billie Holiday. You deserved so much more than you were given when you were on this planet. This is for you Billie.”
Audra, who has also won two Grammys, previously won Tonys for Best Actress in a Play for A Raisin in the Sun and Master Class, Best Actress in a Musical for Porgy and Bess and Best Featured Actress in Ragtime and Carousel.
Produced by Lanie Robertson‘s Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill was originally scheduled as a limited, 10-week engagement, but it has been extended through August 31.
Set in 1959 in a seedy Philadelphia bar, the show relives Billie Holiday’s last performance, taking place only four months before her death at age 44.