Book writer Dominique Morriseau, choreographer Camille A. Brown and director Kamilah Forbes are teaming up to create a musical based on the television series “Soul Train.”
The musical, which is aiming for a Broadway premiere in 2021, will center on the personal story of Don Cornelius, the real-life host and creator of the 1970s television series and feature 20 songs from that era.
“Soul Train” will be produced by Matthew Weaver, Jeffrey Tick and Richard Gay, with executive producers Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, Tony Cornelius, the son of Don Cornelius, Anthony E. Zuiker, the creator of CSI, and Shawn Gee, president of Live Nation Urban.
Created in 1971, “Soul Train” featured performances by R&B, pop, soul, and hip-hop artists, accompanied by dance, in particular the Soul Train dance line. The program aired for 35 years, with its final episode running in 2006. The brand was acquired by television network BET in 2016.
The musical brings together Morriseau, the book writer of “Ain’t Too Proud,” Brown, the choreographer of “Once on This Island” and “Choir Boy” and Forbes, director of “By the Way, Meet Vera Stark” and executive producer at the Apollo Theater.
“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,’” Morriseau said in the press release. “I cannot wait to partner with this legendary creative team of incredible women to celebrate the history and the unsung heroes of our nation’s longest running televised music and dance series.”
Devin Keudell, of Bespoke Theatricals, is serving as executive producer with Bespoke Theatricals as general manager of the production.