Beverly Johnson’s Off-Broadway Debut Celebrates 50 Years Since Groundbreaking Vogue Cover


January 18, 2024

In August 1974, Johnson made history as the first Black model to grace the cover of the renowned fashion magazine.

Iconic model Beverly Johnson is set to debut a one-woman off-Broadway show, “Beverly Johnson: In Vogue,” marking the 50th anniversary of her historic cover of American Vogue, Vogue reports. Co-written by Johnson and Josh Ravetch, the show is deliberately unchronological, weaving a narrative that transcends time. It features a monologue enriched with visuals and music framed by portraits of Black women pioneers. Johnson acts as a tour guide, navigating through the last 50 years of America and drawing connections between her story and broader societal shifts.

While the starting point is her groundbreaking Vogue cover, Johnson shares various aspects of her life, including personal struggles, encounters with notable figures like Elizabeth Taylor and Halston, and her experiences with the #MeToo movement. The narrative reflects on her resilience and unintentional journey from aspiring lawyer to groundbreaking model.


The show also explores Johnson’s determination to break barriers, manifested in her Vogue cover after being told it would never happen. The life-changing moment depicts Johnson rushing to a newsstand without her wallet, trying to prove her identity with the magazine in hand.

For Johnson, the show is an opportunity to reveal her multifaceted identity to her grandchildren, who affectionately call her “Softa” – a blend of soft and tough. As she continues to captivate audiences with her beauty and charisma, Beverly Johnson remains a symbol of resilience and strength.

Cover Photo: Beverly Johnson’s Off-Broadway Debut Celebrates 50 Years Since Groundbreaking Vogue Cover/Beverly Johnson during dress rehearsal of Off-Broadway show in New York/Photo by Richard Termine

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