Lea Michele opens New York's Thanksgiving Day Parade with "Funny Girl" performance

Lea Michele took on her dream role as Fanny Brice in Broadway’s “Funny Girl” this year, and on Thanksgiving she brought the show to New York City’s Herald Square. Michele and some of her co-stars kicked off the televised Thanksgiving Day Parade with a performance of “Don’t Rain On My Parade,” the iconic hit song from the musical. 

The parade often features several Broadway numbers, performed in Herald Square where the parade ends. This year’s parade featured routines from “Some Like It Hot,” “The Lion King” and others. The Rockettes and several featured marching bands from across the country also performed.

Jimmy Fallon, the Roots, Gloria Estefan and Dionne Warwick were also on parade floats. 

96th Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade Rehearsals
Lea Michele and the cast of Funny Girl rehearse during the first day of New York’s Thanksgiving Day Parade rehearsals at Herald Square on Nov. 21, 2022, in New York City. 

Taylor Hill/WireImage

Ahead of the performance, Michele shared a video on her Instagram stories at 5:30 a.m. as she got ready in her Broadway dressing room. She continued to film her journey to Herald Square. She even shared a TikTok dance to Taylor Swift’s “Bejeweled” to mark the occasion. 

Michele has always been enthusiastic about the Fanny Brice role. On “Glee,” a musical television show about a high school glee club, Michele’s character, Rachel Berry, lands the role on Broadway. 

Life eventually imitated art and Michele landed the role earlier this year, replacing Beanie Feldstein. She recieved several standing ovations during her first week in September. 

In an interview with Broadway.com, Michele agreed it was very “meta” that both she and the character she played for six years on “Glee” got to star as Fanny Brice. 

After she got the role, Michele shared two photos — one of herself and one as Rachel Berry – outside of the theater under the “Funny Girl” marquee. “A dream come true,” she wrote on Instagram. 

Lea Michele Joins The Cast Of
Lea Michele takes her first curtain call as Fanny Brice in “Funny Girl” on Broadway at The August Wilson Theatre on Sept. 6, 2022, in New York City.

Bruce Glikas/WireImage

Michele is no stranger to Broadway. She appeared in “Les Miserables” as young Cosette in 1995, when she was just eight years old. She’s also known for her role in “Spring Awakening” — she was part of the original cast in 2006.

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