Shuffle Along Or The Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed Broadway


In May 1921, the new musical Shuffle Along became the unlikeliest of hits, significantly altering the face of the Broadway musical as well as that of New York City. By the time Shuffle Along stumbled into town after a back-breaking pre-Broadway tour, it was deeply in debt and set to open at a remote Broadway house on West 63rd Street. In a season full of spectacles, such as Sally - a Ziegfeld musical - and another edition of George White's Scandals, Shuffle Along's failure was almost a foregone conclusion. New York City was still in the throes of the Depression of 1920. And despite being celebrated vaudeville performers, Miller and Lyles and Sissle and Blake had never performed on Broadway, much less written a musical. But with an infectious jazz score and exuberant dancing, Shuffle Along ignited not just Broadway but all of New York City. George Gershwin, Fanny Brice, Al Jolson, Langston Hughes, and famed critic George Jean Nathan were among the many fans who repeatedly flocked to West 63rd Street to see a cast which - during its run of 504 performances - featured such incipient luminaries as Josephine Baker, Paul Robeson, Florence Mills, Fredi Washington, and Adelaide Hall. Because of Shuffle Along, Uptown and Downtown met and became one.

Audra McDonald, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Billy Porter, Brandon Victor Dixon, and Joshua Henry will star in SHUFFLE ALONG Or The Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed, a striking new production that presents both the 1921 musical itself, and additionally details the events that catalyzed the songwriting team of Noble Sissle and Eubie Blake, and librettists F.E. Miller and Aubrey Lyles to create this ground-breaking work.

SHUFFLE ALONG will have a new book by George C. Wolfe, will be choreographed by Savion Glover, and directed by Mr. Wolfe. SHUFFLE ALONG marks the first time that the writer/director and choreographer will have worked together since their 1996 hit Bring in 'da Noise, Bring in 'da Funk.


Music Box Theatre

(New York, NY)
239 West 45th St. Seating Chart
by Jessica Khan - November 14, 2016
Powerhouse Broadway couple Audra McDonald and Will Swenson just welcomed their new baby girl into the world, and the Broadway community can't wait to see what kind of star she'll grow into. But in the midst of this joy, the producers of SHUFFLE ALONG, which McDonald departed early due to her surprise pregnancy at the age of 45, has sued its insurer Lloyd's of London for refusing to cover the losses caused by the Tony winner's exit.
by BWW Special Coverage - July 24, 2016
SHUFFLE ALONG will play its final Broadway performance today, July 24, 2016, the day six-time Tony-winning star Audra McDonald was already set to depart the production for a multi-month maternity leave. SHUFFLE ALONG began performances on March 15, 2016 and officially opened on April 28 at the Music Box Theatre. It will have played 38 previews and 100 regular performances by the time it ends. Below, BroadwayWorld takes you back through the show's Broadway journey!
by Michael Dale - July 14, 2016
Lin-Manuel Miranda tweets high praise for the show and for Audra McDonald's understudy Darlesia Cearcy.
by BWW News Desk - July 12, 2016
Tony Award Nominee Adrienne Warren (Shuffle Along) joins the cast of DUETS with LGBTQ+ Edition, at Birdland Jazz on August 8th. DUETS with LGBTQ+ Edition is proudly presented by the Broadway at Birdland concert series. This one-night-only event will benefit the One Orlando Fund. 
by Michael Dale - July 6, 2016
The pregnant Broadway stars says she will definitely be showing the animated program to her little one.
by Nora Dominick - July 3, 2016
Happy Birthday Audra McDonald!! Today is six-time Tony Award winner Audra McDonald's birthday and to celebrate her special day BroadwayWorld has decided to round up some of our favorite Audra McDonald videos!
by Michael Dale - June 29, 2016
The legendary dancer/director/choreographer and the great Broadway clown greet the Tony-winning star backstage.
by BWW News Desk - June 23, 2016
The New York Times is reporting that Shuffle Along will close on July 24th, currently the date of Audra McDonald's departure citing a low advance for after she leaves the show. 
by Jennifer Broski - June 21, 2016
Earlier today, Actors' Equity Association presented Shuffle Along Or The Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed with the tenth annual ACCA Award for Outstanding Broadway Chorus. Presented by Equity's Advisory Committee on Chorus Affairs (ACCA) the ACCA Award is the only industry accolade of its kind to honor the distinctive talents and contributions made by the original chorus members of a Broadway musical.
by BWW News Desk - June 15, 2016
Actors' Equity Association (Equity) today announced that Shuffle Along Or The Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed will receive the tenth annual ACCA Award for Outstanding Broadway Chorus.  Presented by Equity's Advisory Committee on Chorus Affairs (ACCA) the ACCA Award is the only industry accolade of its kind to honor the distinctive talents and contributions made by the original chorus members of a Broadway musical. 
by TV News Desk - June 12, 2016
The cast of SHUFFLE ALONG performed a rousing number from the Tony nominated musical. Watch the clip below!
by BWW News Desk - June 9, 2016
The cast of Broadway's SHUFFLE ALONG got a visit from Tinkerbelle the Dog recently - check out photos below!
by Walter McBride - June 7, 2016
On May 4, the 2016 Tony nominees flocked to the Paramount Hotel, where they met with the press for the first time since getting the big news. BroadwayWorld will continue bringing you coverage from the epic day over the next week, but for now, check out photos of Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical nominee for Shuffle Along, Brandon Victor Dixon, as captured by Walter McBride!
by TV News Desk - June 6, 2016
When it comes to acting, Brian Stokes Mitchell has done it all from television, to film and Broadway.
by TV News Desk - June 1, 2016
On last night's premiere episode of the new NBC variety series MAYA AND MARTY, Savion Glover and the cast of SHUFFLE ALONG performed 'The Pennsylvania Graveyard Shuffle,' from the new Broadway musical.
by Michael Dale - May 23, 2016
One of Broadway's funniest performers offers a backstage tour in a new Charitybuzz auction.
by Michael Dale - May 13, 2016
Her singing has helped her win a Grammy, but her Broadway debut will require her to learn tap dancing.
by BroadwayWorld TV - May 12, 2016
A re-imagined version of the 1921 musical SHUFFLE ALONG, one of the earliest stage hits starring, written and directed by African-Americans, opened on April 28 on Broadway at the Music Box Theatre. The musical nabbed a total of 10 Tony nominations this year, including nods for Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical, Best Featured Actor and Actress, Best Scenic Design, Best Costume Design, Best Lighting Design, Best Direction, Best Choreography and Best Orchestrations. BroadwayWorld recently caught up with the nominees -- hear what they had to say about the show, plus watch new performance highlights, in the video below!
by Michael Dale - May 10, 2016
The country blues singer will be making her Broadway debut as Lottie Gee.
by BWW News Desk - May 10, 2016
It's all good news today at the Music Box Theare... and we aren't just talking about Audra McDonald's pregnancy. It was also announced that during Ms. McDonald's hiatus from the production, Savion Glover, SHUFFLE ALONG's Tony Award-nominated choreographer, and widely considered to be the world's greatest living tap dancer, will step into the show, as envisioned by the Director and Book writer, George C. Wolfe.