You can make it a date night and come to the HRT for drinks to enjoy their lively and soulful revival of the 1978 TONY award-winning musical AIN’T MISBEHAVIN’. Extended for five performances from February 25th to May 13th.
Let The Harlem Repertory Theatre's crowd pleasing production of AIN'T MISBEHAVIN' transport you back in time to the golden age of jazz, when hotspots like the Cotton Club played host to the music of 1930s Harlem, and where swing music, jazz and stride piano infused the entire country with renewed energy. This Tony Award-winning, song-filled show celebrates the timeless music of Thomas "Fats" Waller, who penned more than 400 songs during his career, many of which have become jazz standards and are still popular today. An energetic ensemble of the HRT’s most talented performers showcase Waller’s hit songs at their beautiful theatre in Harlem. This swinging and rip-roaring musical revue is performed in a cabaret style with the audiences sitting inches away at cozy tables with candles as a live band plays Waller’s brilliant songs that will have you dancing in the aisles!
Unlike the original Broadway production of AIN’T MISBEHAVIN, the HRT’s director-choreographer, Keith Lee Grant, has developed a new and bold concept for this production that sets Waller’s songs in three distinct and varied environments. The first set of songs is performed as a traditional night club act with the characters singing directly to the audience in a presentational manner. The second set is performed in a living room environment with dramatic story-lines establishing emotional links between the songs and the various characters who perform them. Finally, the last set of songs is staged in a style that was inspired by the popular television variety shows of the 1960s and 1970s in which the actors sing and dance on a stage with minimal set pieces and clearly delineated emotional connections between the actors and the songs that they sing. Mr. Grant believes that staging AIN’T MISBEHAVIN’ in this manner allows both the actors and audience to experience these popular songs in new and more emotionally complex lights. They are no longer a series of Waller’s hit songs sung by performers in a night club, but rather a series of entertaining, dramatic and insightful musical works that develop with an emotional through-line that transports the songs and the actors’ performances to a new level.
AIN’T MISBEHAVIN’ is a brilliant showcase of Fats Waller's magnificent talent that includes the hit standards: T'Ain't Nobody’s Business, This Joint is Jumpin', Honeysuckle Rose, the title song, and many more.