As previously reported, the regional theatre devoted to African-American works, writers and performers has enlisted André De Shields — who starred in the original Broadway cast of the revue — to direct this revival.
De Shields, a two-time Tony Award nominee (Play On! and The Full Monty), was Drama Desk Award-nominated for his appearance in the original 1978 production of Ain't Misbehavin', which celebrates the work of performer-songwriter Thomas "Fats" Waller. (Tyrone Davis will play the track that De Shields originated.)
The musical, conceived by Murray Horwitz and Richard Maltby, Jr., will play Oct. 6-24, at Crossroads' home in New Brunswick, NJ.
Ain't Misbehavin' features favorites associated with Waller, including "I Can't Give You Anything But Love, Baby," "Honeysuckle Rose," "You Feet's Too Big," "Black and Blue," "It's a Sin to Tell a Lie," "Squeeze Me" and "Ain't Misbehavin'."
Crossroads Theatre Company was founded in 1978 by Ricardo Khan and L. Kenneth Richardson with the vision that African-American theatre is intended for a broad-based, diverse audience. "As a major force in the development of new ideas and the introduction of formerly marginalized writers, Crossroads produces works that enrich and diversify the representation of African American culture on the American stage." Crossroads has produced more than 40 world premieres and received the Tony Award in 1999 for Outstanding Regional Theatre in the United States.