Jade 50’s Returns Again!

Come out and join us for a day of excellent music from the extremely talented Jade 50’s at the Moonlight Theatre on September 23rd.

It all began in the Chicago suburb of Oak Park, Illinois in May of 1973. Joe Cantafio was asked by his Oak Park and River Forest High School (OPRFHS) history teachers to perform a set of rock and roll music from the 1950s for the school’s week-long 1950s history lesson, which ended with a “sock hop.” To seal the deal, Cantafio and his band “Jade” were promised the day off of school. The planets all seemed to line up for Joe and the band that day as the entire school of over 5,000 students witnessed a musical phenomenon.

Cantafio and the band greased up their hair, wore leather jackets and performed a set of music during the school’s four lunch periods and after school, but the students never left the Student Center and the audience just kept building and building; even the teachers skipped class that afternoon. The Chicago Daily News sent a crew to Oak Park, took photos of Joe and the band, and published an article about the school’s successful “1950s” Decades Week” history lesson. Within a week letters from area high schools and colleges began to flood OPRFHS, with requests to repeat exactly what OPRFHS had done… and they wanted that band! And just like magic, JADE 50’s was born!

Soon after that, JADE 50’s began performing at high schools and colleges and then began performing in night clubs and within a few years they were setting attendance records across America. Soon they were performing at large concert venues nationally, and when the movie “Grease” premiered in Chicago, JADE 50’s was hired to perform at the film’s opening, and at the cast party at Chicago’s Navy Pier, where everyone attending the film was invited, including the cast. A few months later, broadcast pioneer, Dick Clark, host of American Bandstand, recruited JADE 50’s to perform with his live touring Rock and Roll Show when he came to Chicago to perform at ChicagoFest. Clark immediately loved the band and named Cantafio his “music director.” JADE 50’s performed with “Dick Clarks Good Ol’ Rock and Roll Show” for over four years, opening the show with a 20/30 minute set, and then playing backup for Rock and Roll pioneers, Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, Del Shannon, The Shirelles, The Crystals, Johnny Rivers, Jerry Lee Lewis, The Coasters, The Drifters, The Marvelettes, Freddy Cannon, Ronnie Spector, and many more.

Rock and Roll legend Wolfman Jack also hired JADE 50’s, and toured with them, appearing on-stage as special guests on shows with Tommy James, Dion, The Crystals and Bo Diddley.

After 13 years, 2-record albums and 3-singles, and widespread national airplay, JADE 50’s un-greased their hair, shed their sequins, and each member moved in a different musical direction. However, they never lost touch with each other.

In 2022, a night club that JADE 50’s performed at in 1976, contacted Cantafio and asked if he would come to Peoria, IL and perform a few songs at a 45-year reunion of the opening of the club. Joe said, “Let me contact my former band members and see if they’d like to join me one more time.” They all answered with an enthusiastic “YES.”

The older, wiser and musically polished JADE 50’s took the stage to thunderous applause. They knocked it out of the park, performing the songs that JADE 50’s became famous for; “Remember Then,” “Little Darling,” “Pretty Little Angel Eyes,” “Little Sister,” “Come Go With Me,” “Runaway,” and songs made famous by Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry and The Beatles.

During the days that followed, people attending the show began to post photos and videos of the JADE 50’s’ performance. Soon Cantafio’s phone began to ring with offers to hire JADE 50’s, and after a series of phone calls, just like the Blues Brothers, they put the band back together again.

Joe Cantafio will front the band once more, and be joined by former JADE 50’s members Keith Grant (guitar/vocals), Mike Arturi (drums) Joey Giovanini (bass guitar/vocals) Nate Klinger (saxophone/keyboards/vocals) and Mike Miosi (keyboards/vocals.)

Get ready America… Chicago’s Own West Side Story rides again!


  • Doors open 60 min before show start time.  Please come in, enjoy a drink or some food while you wait for the show to start!!
  • Tickets are available for purchase at the Box Office, 60 minutes before the show.
  • Please arrive at least 15 minutes prior to the show to check in at the Box Office.  Please have your QR codes ready to scan at the Box Office (emailed to you at checkout).  You must check in at the Box Office using your QR codes prior to gaining access to the showroom!
  • Doors lock 30 min after scheduled start time.  If you arrive at the theatre after this time, you will not be able to enter the theatre.
  • Management reserves the right to deny entry to customers who they consider to be disruptive or dangerous to other patrons.
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  • All sales are final, and we do not offer refunds, credits, or exchanges under any circumstances.
  • All tickets grant access to general admission seating, encompassing both our main floor and, for select performances, our balcony seating.  Tickets are purchased as general theatre admission or row based admission.  When row-based, your seat will be guaranteed in the row selected; however, seating is general admission for the given row.  You will not be able to select your seat in your assigned row until you arrive at the theatre on a first-come, first-serve basis.  For general theatre admission ticketing, all seats and rows are on a first-come, first-serve basis and there are no reserved rows or seats.

ADA Seating (Rows G & H) are RESERVED for individuals protected under The Americans with Disabilities Act.  Please let us know when purchasing your ticket if wheelchair access is required.

Moonlight Theatre reserves the right to seat patrons in the ADA Section at their discretion.


Sep 23 2023


7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

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Moonlight Theatre
7 S 2nd Ave, St. Charles, IL 60174, USA
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