Q: Where have I seen the actress who played the Mother Superior in the live broadcast of “The Sound of Music”?

A: That was Audra McDonald. You might have seen her lots of places.

In addition to being in “The Sound of Music” with Carrie Underwood, December found her on “Christmas in Rockefeller Center” and in the documentary “Six by Sondheim.”

According to her website, classical music publication Musical America named her its musician of the year. She also has two Grammys and five Tonys, the latter for performances in productions of “Carousel,” “Master Class,” “Ragtime,” “A Raisin in the Sun” and “The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess.” Her most extended TV role was as a regular on the ABC series “Private Practice”; her movie credits include “Rampart” with Woody Harrelson.

‘Devious Maids’ coming back

Q: When the regular season of “Devious Maids” on Lifetime ended in September, one TV ad said it would return in October. Apparently, this never happened. Has it been canceled?

A: The series has been renewed for a second season. Look for it in the spring.

Will and Rob Estes not related

Q: Is Will Estes of “Blue Bloods” any relation to Rob Estes of “90210”?

A: No, although you are not the only one to ask that question.

“People ask, yeah,” Will Estes told ET Online. “I met Rob once briefly. I don’t know him, but I consider [the idea that they’re related] a ­compliment.”

Read goes beyond ‘North and South’

Q: James Read was George Hazard in the “North and South” TV miniseries in the mid- to late 1980s. Has he done any movies or TV roles since then?

A: Read first came to wide notice as Murphy Michaels in the first season of “Remington Steele,” then became even bigger when he played Hazard in the first “North and South” miniseries in 1985; he played the main member of a Northern family intersecting with a Southern family before and during the Civil War.

Patrick Swayze was Read’s opposite number in the Southern clan.

While working on that program, Read also met actress Wendy Kilbourne, and they later married. Read went on to appear in two “North and South” sequels in 1986 and 1994 as well as many other TV performances, including guest roles on “Castle,” “CSI:NY” and other programs, recurring appearances on “American Dreams” and “Persons Unknown” and a regular role on “Wildfire.”


Send questions about pop culture (with name and address) to rheldenfels@thebeaconjournal.com.