Soul Train, the long-running music and dance variety show, is getting musical treatment. The legendary television show, which ran from 1971 to 2006, will make a stop to Broadway in 2021, Deadline reports.
Directed by Kamilah Forbes and written by Dominique Morisseau, the musical will follow the life of Soul Train creator and host Don Cornelius, who died in 2012, as he develops the television series. It will also include over 20 classic hit songs from the era.
Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson shares an executive producer title along with Anthony E. Zuiker (CSI), Shawn Gee (Live Nation Urban), and Tony Cornelius, son of Don Corenlius.
“With many years of experience working directly with my father, I’m forever grateful and deeply humbled by the impact Soul Train has had on the culture at large both here and abroad,” Tony Cornelius told Deadline in a statement. “For 37 years, and with purpose, through music, dance and style, Soul Train brought Love, Peace & Soul to a national audience.”
Morisseau added, “Having grown up on this series, and being immersed in the culture around it, I never knew what it took to make it the iconic staple that it is. Through the socio-political challenges both internally and externally, Don Cornelius’ uncompromised vision, and the revolutionary dance culture that the show made visible to the mainstream, there are a million handprints on what we know as Soul Train.”
The creative team planned a 2021 Broadway premiere to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the show’s TV debut.
Soul Train, known as the “hippest trip in America,” was the premier destination for African American artists and dancers alike to showcase their talents on center stage. Aretha Franklin, James Brown, The Jackson 5, Marvin Gaye, and many others delivered memorable performances.