AIN’T MISBEHAVIN’: “A Feast for Music Lovers”

by RoxyRegionalTheatre on February 18, 2011

Mark and Valerie Hunter-Kelly, with The Air Assault Team at Keller Williams Realty, hosted a dress rehearsal preview performance of Ain’t Misbehavin’ the Thursday night before our Friday pay-what-you-can preview. Many first-time Roxy theatre-goers were dazzled by the performances of Keith Patrick McCoy, Rendell DeBose, Faith Boles, Roslyn Seale, Brittney Mack and Tom Thayer on piano.

On Monday, February 21, and Tuesday, February 22, at 6pm, theotherspace will house a new one-person performance, Danielle: Diary of a Cutter, by local playwright Ricky Steven Young Jr. Tickets are $10. Theotherspace was created as a venue for such works: new plays, student projects, and plays which are not always considered standard fare. Like The Vagina Monologues, which finished its ninth year, featuring Faith Boles and Roslyn Seale (with much thanks to Amber Wallace, Jill Eichhorn, Melissa Schaffner, Paige King and Kate Smith for their support and performances; and, of course, Hannah Kitterman for making sure everything was in order for all performances), adding so much to the awareness of Eve Ensler’s work while raising almost $5,000 over the years for Clarksville’s SafeHouse and Nashville’s Magdalene House.

Our sixth annual “Martinis with …” event was a great success! Jane Burney of Lovin’ Spoonful Café served up some super and creative hors d’oeuvres which perfectly complemented the martinis and the performance. Thanks also goes to Horace Heggie of Pal’s Package Store, as well as to students from our Saturday School of the Arts — Jaymin Burr, Autumn Crofton, Samantha Grimes, Krista LaRocca, Michelle Lebkuecher, Hugh Poland, Jacob Ritchart and Amy Wyer — who pitched in to serve.

Jeffrey Ellis of wrote a glowing review without a single caveat:

“Where you could possibly find five more charming and engaging performers than the cast assembled by director/choreographer Ryan Bowie for his winning revival of Ain’t Misbehavin‘ is beyond me! These five dazzling entertainers deliver a musical jolt of electricity that completely enlivens the dark, frigid days of winter, taking audiences on a musical and historical journey through the Harlem Renaissance via the life and career of Mrs. Waller’s bouncing 250-pound baby boy, Thomas — better known as ‘Fats’ …

Featuring a cavalcade of Waller’s best-known compositions (like ‘I Can’t Give You Anything But Love,’ ‘Gonna Sit Right Down and Write Myself A Letter,’ ‘Honeysuckle Rose,’ ‘The Joint is Jumpin’’ and the title tune), as well as some of his lesser-known, more esoteric titles (‘Fat and Greasy,’ ‘Lookin’ Good But Feelin’ Bad’ and ‘Off-Time’), Ain’t Misbehavin’ is a feast for music lovers …

Together, this talented ensemble — accompanied by the exceptional musical talents of music director Tom Thayer, who plays all those wonderful Waller tunes — delivers the goods on all fronts, thanks to Bowie’s skilled direction and his imaginative vision …”

We’re back to Wednesday through Saturday performances, with Wednesday and Thursday night curtains at 7pm, Friday and Saturday night curtains at 8pm, and a 2pm matinee this Saturday, February 19.

Now, if reviews would turn into ticket sales …

See you at the theatre!

[John McDonald]

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