Broadway star Audra McDonald will repeat her award-winning performance as Billie Holiday in “Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill” for HBO.
According to today’s announcement, the show will be filmed before a live audience this month at Cafe Brasil in New Orleans. The announcement did not include a date for the HBO premiere.
McDonald made Broadway history with the show earlier this year by claiming her sixth Tony Award, giving her the most awards for an actress in all four categories, including musicals and straight plays. The Tony Awards previously recognized her work in “Carousel,” “Master Class,” “Ragtime,” “A Raisin in the Sun” and “The Gershwins’ Porgy & Bess.”
“Lady Day” was written by Lanie Robertson and depicts the great jazz singer’s final performance as she mixes songs with recollections of painful life experiences and rambling anecdotes. McDonald, trained as an opera singer, impressed many who saw the show for her ability to capture Holiday’s distinctive jazz vocal style.