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Ain't Misbehavin' (1982)

TV Movie  |   |  Musical  |  21 June 1982 (USA)
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Ratings: 9.2/10 from 162 users  
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Televised version of the Broadway sensation celebrating the music, life and times of 'Fats' Waller, featuring 29 songs he wrote or performed.


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Title: Ain't Misbehavin' (TV Movie 1982)

Ain't Misbehavin' (TV Movie 1982) on IMDb 9.2/10

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Won 2 Primetime Emmys. Another 1 win & 6 nominations. See more awards »


Credited cast:
Armelia McQueen ...
Herself (as Charlaine Woodard)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Luther Henderson ...
The Piano Player


Televised version of the Broadway sensation celebrating the music, life and times of 'Fats' Waller, featuring 29 songs he wrote or performed.

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Release Date:

21 June 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Suoraan Broadwaylta: Ain't misbehavin  »

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The original Broadway production of "Ain't Misbehavin'" opened at the Longacre Theater in New York on May 9, 1978, ran for 1604 performances and won the 1978 Tony Award (New York City) for the Best Musical. Nell Carter (Winner of the 1978 Tony Award Best Featured Actress in a Musical), André De Shields, Armelia McQueen, Ken Page and Charlayne Woodard all recreated their roles in this filmed production. See more »

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User Reviews

Nell Carter Almost Steals the Show
7 March 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This legendary Broadway show started way off Broadway but was so full of of talent and good cheer it worked its way to Broadway where it won Tony Awards for best musical and supporting actress Nell Carter. Altogether, this show from May 1978 til February 1982. This NBC production is dated 1982 and features the incredible original cast.

First off, the music of Fats Waller that this show is built around is great. Some Waller tunes like "Ain't Misbehavin'" and "Honeysuckle Rose" are among the all-time standards of American pop music.

Secondly the cast of five singers (who also dance, clown, and act up a storm) is just about perfection. Nell Carter emerged as a star after this show hit Broadway and went on to movies, TV, and more stage work. Here, her best moments include the touching "Mean to Me" and the sassy "Cash for Your Trash." Carter also won an Emmy for this TV production.

Andre De Shields is memorable in his "Reefer" and "Viper" medley and dances up a storm in "How Ya Baby." He also won an Emmy for this TV production.

Charlaine Woodard gets the spotlight in "Keepin' Out of Mischief Now" and matches De Shields in dancing to "How Ya Baby." Ken Page has a lot of fun with "Your Feets Too Big" and also "Fat and Greasy." Armelia McQueen is tops with the novelty song "When the Nylons Bloom Again" and "Squeeze Me" and pairs nicely with De Shields on "Two Sleepy People." The entire cast works well in the sad "Black and Blue" which is arranged as a choral event. There's also a lively "re-enactment" of a Harlem party in "This Joint is Jumping." And everyone gets a moment in the incredibly lively "Handful of Keys" number.

There are many more golden moments here with 29 of Waller's songs (as composer or singer) featured.

Staged in front of an intimate dinner club setting, the 5 stars go through their paces with minimal staging or costumes. Luther Henderson sits at an upright piano a la Waller and is often the only accompaniment. But at a certain point the scenery goes up and we get a small on-stage jazz band.

This show is full of Black humor and sass and is loaded with talent. No gimmicks here. No huge chorus. No clutter to get in the way of the music.

A terrific evening of theatre.

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