The Ensemble Theatre, 3535 Main St. in Houston, Texas, will debut its first production from Jan. 31 to Feb. 24, 2013, by award winning playwright Charles Smith as its 2012-2013 season continues. The show will be directed by visiting artist Chuck Smith, resident director at Chicago’s Goodman Theatre.
“Knock Me a Kiss” takes place during the 1920s in Harlem. The story follows Yolonda DuBois, a woman torn between two lovers. One is a fast-living musician, Jimmy Lunceford, the other a poet, Countee Cullen, sanctioned by her father, activist W.E.B. DuBois. This fictional account is inspired by the actual events surrounding the 1928 marriage of W.E.B. Du Bois’ daughter Yolande to one of Harlem’s great poets, Countee Cullen. The marriage marked the height of the Harlem Renaissance and was viewed as the perfect union of Negro talent and beauty. It united the daughter of America’s foremost black intellectual, co-founder of the NAACP and publisher of Crisis Magazine, with a poet whose work was considered to be one of the flagships for the New Negro movement. At what personal cost does a leader pay to make life better for so many others when he is blind to those living in his own home?
The Ensemble Theatre’s 2012-2013 Season is sponsored in part by grants from the City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance and Texas Commission on the Arts. United Airlines is the exclusive airline sponsor for The Ensemble Theatre. For more information, call (713) 520-0055.