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Arts & Culture

Civic Theatre presents 'Ain't Misbehavin' a Fats Waller homage in Allentown

Ain't Misbehavin' Civic Theatre
Civic Theatre
Ain't Misbehavin' begins on Feb. 23 at the Civic Theatre in Allentown.

ALLENTOWN, Pa. — Take a trip back in time with the music of the Harlem Renaissance at a performance of “Ain't Misbehavin': the Fats Waller Musical Show," which debuted, Feb. 23 and runs through March 10 at the Civic Theatre, 527 N. 19th St. in Allentown.

The historic theater, otherwise known as the 19th Street Theatre, recently joined the National Register of Historic Places list on Feb. 12.

Tickets start at $35 for adults, $30 (students, seniors and military members) and $13 (13-years-old and younger).

Directorial debut

Civic Theatre
"Ain't Misbehavin': the Fats Waller Musical," starts Friday, Feb. 23 at the Civic Theatre in Allentown.

The production is based on the Broadway musical, which won a Tony Award in 1978.

It takes place during the Harlem Renaissance, in the 1920s and 30s, and is told through the jazz tunes of Thomas “Fats" Waller.

It's equal part sass, sultriness and soul, says performing artist Gabe Moses.

Moses is a graduate of Lehigh High Valley Charter Arts High School and DeSales University and will make his directorial debut in the musical.

“Audiences can expect the Civic Theatre of Allentown’s production of 'Ain’t Misbehavin’' to be a 2024 reimagining of this classic jazz musical. While honoring the Harlem Renaissance, our production will take onlookers into a time capsule back to a 1930s nightclub to unravel a series of vignettes told through song and dance by a sea of zany characters," Moses, who was also the lead choreographer, said in a release.

It's equal part sass, sultriness and soul."
performing artist Gabe Moses

“As a tribute to jazz musician, Fats Waller, 'Ain’t Misbehavin,' encapsulates both Waller’s humorous and dark perspectives of his world. This production promises to be an upbeat homage to an era that set forth jazz and swing music for the artists of today.”

Starring in the show are local thespians, Deborah D’Haiti, Andrew Stewart, Keith M. Miller Sr., Veronica Cummings and Juanita Renay Gray.

The production features Waller’s famous hits such as “Honeysuckle Rose,” “The Joint is Jumpin’,” and “Black and Blue,” but it also showcases his impact on the world, starting with his New York City beginnings.

For more information, click here.