City of Seattle

Ed Murray, Mayor


SUBJECT:   Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute presents world premiere of Hello Darlin's: Mom's got Something to Tell You!
9/4/2013  3:00:00 PM

Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute presents world premiere of Hello Darlin's: Mom's got Something to Tell You!
Josephine Howell Stars as "Moms" Mabley

Performances: Sept. 25 - Oct. 26 2 p.m. & 7 p.m.
Opening/Press Night: Friday, Sept. 27, 7 p.m.
ARTS CRUSH: 2-for-1 tickets, Thursday, Oct. 17

Seattle WA, -- Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute (LHPAI) presents the world premiere of Hello Darlin's: Mom's got Something to Tell You! This hilarious one-woman show about the iconic ahead-of-her-time comedian Jackie "Moms" Mabley (1894-1975) includes fabulous music and is written by local playwright Dan Owens. LHPAI artistic director Jacqueline Moscou directs the multi-talented Josephine Howell as Jackie "Moms" Mabley, whose career spanned from the 1920's Chitlin Circuit well into the 1970s, leaving behind a legacy of over 20 albums and memorable appearances on many popular variety and talk shows including Ed Sullivan and the Smothers Brothers. Most recently Howell brought down the house with her breathtaking solo performances around the Seattle area. Howell also entertains as a singer in her band Josephine Howell and Friends as well as lead with the Seattle band Radio Raheem. Seattle's own Cedwrick Thomas joins Howell on stage as Luther the Piano Man.

"Life is like a game of poker: If you don't put anything in the pot, there won't be any to take out."
-Jackie "Mom's" Mabley

Mabley was a pioneer in her field, a black woman who pushed the boundaries of taste, politics and race, and was one of the first triple-X rated comedians on the comedy circuit. Hello Darlin's has some racy material; it is recommended for ages 16 and up. Performances will be held at Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute at 104 17th Ave S., in Seattle. Previews are Wednesday and Thursday, September 25 and 26 at 7 p.m. Opening Night is Friday, September 27 at 7 p.m. Regular performances run Thursday through Sunday at 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday matinees are at 2 p.m.

Advance evening tickets are $20 for adults and $25 day of show at the door. Advance matinee tickets are $15 for adults and $20 day of show at the door. Youth and Seniors are always $10. Tickets are available at the Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute and through Brown Paper Tickets: or 1-800-838-3006.

On October 18 the Seattle Lesbian and Gay Film Festival will be premiering a new documentary by director and executive producer Whoopi Goldberg about Moms Mabley. Titled Moms Mabley: I Got Somethin' to Tell You, this feature length film examines her turbulent early years and rise to fame, and includes rediscovered performance footage and unearthed photography. Information about this local screening can be found here

LHPAI is also participating in ARTS CRUSH. The first 75 patrons to respond may purchase two-for-one tickets to the Thursday, Oct. 17 performance of Hello Darlin's. Tickets must be purchased online at

About Jackie "Moms" Mabley
Born March 19, 1894 in Brevard, North Carolina, the details of Loretta Mary Aiken's early life are difficult. She lost both her biological parents before the age of twelve and went on to be primarily raised by her grandmother and stepfather. By the age of fifteen she had been sexually abused and bore two children, both of whom were given up for adoption. She was forced to marry a much older man, though it did not take her long to run away and hitch a ride with a travelling minstrel show to Cleveland. She learned of the Chitlin' Circuit performers and decided that was her future. She adopted the stage name Jackie Mabley, and because she was a "Mom" to many other circuit comedians in the 1950s and 1960s, she became known as "Moms" Mabley. At the age of twenty-seven she came out as a lesbian and recorded several early lesbian stand-up routines. She often appeared in androgynous clothing including the 1933 film version of The Emperor Jones with Paul Robeson. Her fame exploded during the comedy record boom of the early sixties. Mabley died in White Plains, New York in 1975. She had six children (including the two who had been adopted) and five grandchildren.

Langston Hughes Performing Arts Instittue | Preserving the legacy.
104 17th Ave S., Seattle | | 206-684-4758
LHPAI celebrates, nurtures, presents, and preserves African American and Diaspora performing arts, cultural wealth and iconic legacies. Named for the prolific African American artist Langston Hughes, LHPAI represents the pluralism of local, national and global Black people, in the media platforms of film, dance, theatre and music.

Office of Arts & Culture | Making art work.
We envision a city driven by creativity that provides the opportunity for everyone to engage in diverse arts and cultural experiences. We are supported by the 16-member Seattle Arts Commission, citizen volunteers appointed by the mayor and City Council.

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