June 20, 2024 11:33 am

Audra McDonald Leads the 2024 Rose Parade

Actress and six-time Tony Award winner Audra McDonald was announced as the grand marshal for the 2024 Tournament of Roses on Friday.

Tournament of Roses President Alex Aghajanian shared, “Audra McDonald not only gracefully epitomizes our theme but also perfectly personifies the power of music to move, soothe, excite, and delight us all,” during the announcement outside Tournament House in Pasadena.

The theme for the 2024 Rose Parade is “Celebrating a World of Music.”

McDonald, with six Tony Awards, holds the record for the most wins by any performer, having triumphed in all four acting categories. Additionally, she boasts two Grammy Awards and an Emmy. In 2016, she received the National Medal of Arts from President Barack Obama, and in 2017, she was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame.

In expressing her gratitude, McDonald said, “I am so deeply honored to have been invited to serve as the grand marshal of the 2024 Rose Parade. As a California kid, raised in Fresno, the new year was always ushered in with the Rose Bowl. Every January 1st, I’d wake up early to watch the parade and the game with my family.”

Reflecting on her father’s love for football, she added, “My dad, may he rest in peace, was a huge football fan, always rooting for his beloved Oakland Raiders — I know they’re not in Oakland anymore — and the Fresno State Bulldogs. And although his beloved Bulldogs have yet to make it to the Rose Bowl, the Fresno State Bulldogs Marching Band made their Rose Parade debut last year, so go Bulldogs.”

She concluded, “And my dad would just be so thrilled to know — surprised, but very thrilled to know — that I was serving as the Rose Parade grand marshal.”