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Review: Audra McDonald Live in Concert

© Autumn de Wilde and Audra McDonald

Quite simply astonishing.

Don’t recognise the name? Well, you should.

Why? Because Audra McDonald is a remarkable talent. Not only in vocal ability, but her stunning smile and painfully addictive charm.

The six-time Tony Award winner comes direct to London to mark the closing day of her international tour. Having played over 60 dates, Audra joined a sold out Leicester Square Theatre for her closing show. And what a show it was.

Simplicity set from the start, Audra entered to no introduction, alongside her pianist Andy Einhorn, to thunderous applause from the waiting audience. On time, and looking everything the star.

Explaining it has been over 15 years since she last performed a solo concert in London, the return finds her performing a selection of her favourite hits from the Great American Musical Theatre Songbook.

Opening with When Did I Fall in Love, Audra chose her songs careful. A mixture of honesty, intelligence and crowd favourites. You learnt, but also eased at her selection. No doubt, every audience member leaving the theatre with a new track for their morning commute.

Songs performed included Stars and Moon, I’ll Be Here, The Glamorous Life, I Could Have Danced All Night and the truly iconic, Maybe This Time. Before each, Audra used her life experiences and reasonings to explain its selection. Nothing was ever placed because she just wanted. It all had heart. It all had meaning.

Songs coming from Jason Robert Brown, Adam Gwon, Kander and Ebb, Stephen Sondheim, among others.

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However, Audra’s shining moment came towards the latter half of the evening with her performance of Climb Every Mountain from The Sound of Music; a role she played on the live telly version. And ending her evening with an emotive tribute to Judy Garland and her signature song, Somewhere Over The Rainbow.

Audra McDonald is the vision of perfection. Not only through her stunning soprano ability, but infectious warmth of heart. We’re just thankful she asked London to be her closing venue.

GT gives Audra McDonald Live in Concert — 5/5


Audra McDonald makes her West End debut in Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill at London’s Wyndham’s Theatre from 24 June.

GT box office strip

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