Theater: Jitney

By August Wilson.

Before embarking on his acclaimed cycle of plays on black life in the 20th century (Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, The Piano Lesson), Wilson penned this early work about the denizens of a gypsy-cab company in Pittsburgh, Pa., in the late 1970s. Now, given a "definitive" rewrite by the author, it has been revived in a superlative production at the Center Stage, in Baltimore, Md. With little obvious effort, Wilson rivets our attention on the daily struggles of a half-dozen ordinary but entirely individual characters while gradually homing in on the explosive conflict between two: the cab company's owner and his estranged...

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