The casting was a surprise. The program did not include McDonald's name with the rest of the cast, listing "?" instead of a name.
McDonald entered the stage with the cast to perform the opening song, "The Ballad of Sweeney Todd." She will reprise her portrayal of the Beggar Woman March 6-7.
The presentation of Sweeney Todd, directed by Lonny Price, concludes its run at Avery Fisher Hall March 8. It will be filmed for a future national broadcast on PBS' "Live From Lincoln Center." The air date has not been announced.
Her solo albums include "Go Back Home" (2013), "Way Back to Paradise" (1998), "How Glory Goes" (2000), "Happy Songs" (2002) and "Build a Bridge" (2006).
Bass-baritone Terfel (Ring Cycle, Falstaff, The Marriage of Figaro) stars in the title role of Sweeney Todd, with Emma Thompson ("Howards End," "Sense and Sensibility") making her New York stage debut as pie-maker Nellie Lovett. The cast also features Tony Award winner Christian Borle (Peter and the Starcatcher, "Smash") as Pirelli, with Philip Quast (Les Misérables, Sunday in The Park with George) in his New York stage debut as Judge Turpin, Jeff Blumenkrantz (Murder for Two, Candide) as The Beadle, Jay Armstrong Johnson (Hands on a Hardbody, Hair) as Anthony Hope, Erin Mackey (Chaplin, Anything Goes) as Johanna and Kyle Brenn (West Side Story) as Tobias Ragg.
Set in Victorian London, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, according to press notes, tells the story of the "eponymous barber who seeks vengeance on what he sees as a merciless world by murdering his customers and, with the help of his landlady, the romantically inclined Mrs. Lovett, bakes their bodies into meat pies, which are fed to London’s avid and unknowing populace."
With music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and a book by Hugh Wheeler, Sweeney Todd first opened on Broadway at the Uris Theatre on March 1, 1979, directed by Harold Prince and starring Len Cariou and Angela Lansbury. The show received eight Tony Awards in 1979 — including Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical and Best Original Score — as well as 11 Drama Desk Awards and the Drama Critics’ Circle Award for Best Musical.
All tickets may be purchased online at nyphil.org or by calling (212) 875-5656. Tickets may also be purchased at the Avery Fisher Hall Box Office.