The Chocolate Dandies
MusicEubie Blake
LyricsNoble Sissle
BookNoble Sissle &
Lew Payton
PremiereSeptember 1, 1924: New Colonial Theatre

The Chocolate Dandies is a Broadway musical in two acts that opened September 1, 1924, at the New Colonial Theatre and ran for 96 performances – finishing November 22, 1924.[1][2]

Initial production

The 1924 debut of The Chocolate Dandies was produced by Bertram Cecil Whitney (1870–1929). Eubie Blake composed the music; Noble Sissle wrote the lyrics and co-authored the book; Lew Payton was also co-author; Julian Mitchell staged it; Lorenzo C. Calduel (aka Lawrence Caldwell; born 1888, Mexico) scored the orchestral and vocal parts; John Newton Booth, Jr. (1890–1949), Kiviette,[Note 1] and Hugh Willoughby (1891–1973) designed the costumes; Tony Greshoff (né Anton Greshoff; 1870–1943) did the lighting design.


. . . without doubt the most picturesque product that a colored company ever presented to Broadway, with the possible exception of Williams and Walker's classical production Abyssinia [1906]; and it is not overstepping bounds in comparing its beautiful settings with the best that Broadway affords.

— F. J. Accoe, New York Interstate Tattler, 1924[3]



  1. ^ Kiviette (née Yetta Shimansky; 1893–1978) was a theatrical costume designer who had once worked for Hilarie Mahieu Costumes, Inc. – Hilarie Albert Mahieu (1877–1964). Around 1930, she had a widely publicized divorce from Herman Pomeranz, MD (1885–1956). She was charged in court for running a scheme, which failed, to entrap Pomeranz in an affair. In 2010, New York became one of the last of the fifty states to allow no-fault divorces even in cases where there was no mutual consent to the divorce. Before that, she was married and divorced from Abel Kiviat (1892–1991), a National Champion middle distance runner from Staten Island.


  1. ^ Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance, Cary D. Wintz and Paul Finkelman (eds.), Routledge (2004)
  2. ^ Dictionary of the Black Theatre: Broadway, Off-Broadway, and Selected Harlem Theatre (re: "Chocolate Dandies, The"), by Allen L. Woll, Greenwood Press (1983), pps. 43–44, 189, 258, 268, (borrowable online via Internet Archive)
  3. ^ "'Chocolate Dandies' is Scoring Heavily," by Ferdinand J. Accoe, New York Interstate Tattler (weekly), September 28, 1924, p. 7; OCLC 1102398919
    (the Interstate Tattler was published by the Hotel Tattler Pub. Co. Inc., New York City, 201 W. 138th Street; the publication is accessible in the newspaper collection at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture)