During several of the years I spent at CityBeat as arts and entertainment editor, I sat just a few feet away from Kathy Y. Wilson. She was an indisputable force of nature: When she arrived in the office, the otherwise quiet room full of writers exploded with her raucous laughter, challenging dialogue and outspoken presence.
I had the singular privilege of editing her "Your Negro Tour Guide" column for quite a bit of that time, giving me a regular dose of her wit and profound insights about an aspect of American life that some readers loved and others hated. No one was take-it-or-leave-it about Kathy and what she had to say in her writing.
Many of her columns found their way into her book, Your Negro Tour Guide: Truths in Black and White, and those evolved into a staged piece that showed up in the Cincinnati Fringe Festival in 2009. That work, featuring CCM drama grad Torie Wiggins, is back for an encore engagement at Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati for the next several weeks, offered on evenings when Thurgood is not being performed.
The first of these performances is Sunday, Monday and Tuesday; additional offerings are Oct. 23, 24 and 25. Altogether that's only six times — and Kathy's local rep is such that tickets have been snapped up. If you want to be in the know on this one, you'd better call right now for tickets: 513-421-3555.
You can find showtimes and ticket info online for both Your Negro Tour Guide and Thurgood here, including my review of Thurgood.