Jitney is Pulitzer Prize-winner August Wilson’s drama about a 1970s group of working class men who offer gypsy cab rides to and from African American communities where city cabs refuse to go. Directed and designed by Lewis Campbell. Produced by Multi-Ethnic Theatre Co. in association with Custom Made Theatre Co. Gough Street Playhouse, 1622 Gough Street, San Francisco.
Like most of Wilson’s plays, Jitney is set in the inner-city African-American community in Pittsburgh, PA. Jitney’s cab drivers try to eke out a living in the face of urban renewal and a bureaucracy blind to their dreams. Along the way, a young couple tries to buy a house, a Viet Nam vet contends with malicious gossip, and a son returns from 20 years in prison. Becker, the jitney stand owner, tries to keep everything afloat for his drivers and customers who include an alcoholic tailor and a Korean War vet whose job it was to “pile the bodies six high.” Jitney is probably the only play in which a major character is a pay phone.
Runs Aug. 7-31; Thurs-Sat. 8:00 pm, Sundays 7:00 pm. Sunday matinees Aug. 10 and 31 at 2:00 pm. Tickets $30-35; $20 opening week. https://www.wehavemet.org