Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati

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OUR 2021–2022 SEASON

The arts are back and so is your premiere theatre.

After a prolonged intermission, Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati is returning to the stage! We are incredibly excited for this season, not only because we get to have our friends back on the stage and in the audience again, but because the stories we are bringing to life are so powerful and of the moment.

From continuing the show we had to abruptly close one day after its opening, to a world premiere, and more, our upcoming season is filled with extraordinary writers, unique stories, and social issues in line with what’s happening globally, nationally, and locally.

Explore our upcoming shows and join us for a wonderful season of theatre!


by Dominique Morisseau

September 21–October 16, 2021


Nya, a public high school teacher, is committed to her students but desperate to give her only son, Omari, opportunities they’ll never have. But when an explosive incident at his prestigious private school threatens to get him expelled, will all her efforts be lost? A compelling, must-see portrait of parenthood, education, and the experience of young black men in America, this show brings an urgent conversation powerfully to the forefront. This is the deeply moving story of a mother’s fight to give her son a future—without turning her back on the community that made him who he is.  


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by Joseph McDonough, David Kisor, & Fitz Patton

December 1–30, 2021

What do you get when you combine a nearsighted bookworm heroine, two fabulously self-absorbed stepsisters, one devilishly diva stepmother, along with a self-empowering Well-Wisher? A fun spin on the classic fairy tale that demonstrates being smart is true beauty! When the King pressures his romantically challenged son to choose a bride from hundreds of “applicants,” a cross-country tour of the kingdom ensues to reunite a missing sneaker—yes a sneaker!—with its rightful owner. This family-friendly musical is suitable for all ages.  


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by Madhuri Shekar

February 19–March 19, 2022

PhD candidates Sanam and Ariel have spent the better part of the last decade exhaustively researching vanishing bee populations across the globe. Just as these close friends are about to publish a career-defining paper, Sanam stumbles upon an error in their calculations, which could cause catastrophic damage to their reputations, careers, and friendship. Now, Sanam is confronted with an impossible choice: look the other way or stand by her principles and accept the consequences?


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I Shall Not Be Moved

by Isaiah Reaves


Your Negro Tour Guide

by Kathy Y. Wilson

adapted by Jeff Griffin & Torie Wiggins


April 9–May 7, 2022

I Shall Not Be Moved is a one-woman show that thrillingly recounts the story of playwright Isaiah Reaves’s grandmother, nationally recognized Civil Rights pioneer Betty Daniels Rosemond and her beautiful, horrifying, and trailblazing journey through the American South as one of the first Freedom Riders during the 1960s. Audiences far and wide will experience the internal conflicts and joys of a dark-skinned Black woman’s fearless battle for equity and equality. Please note: after this performance concludes (approximate run time is 1 hour), there will be an intermission after which Your Negro Tour Guide will be performed. No additional ticket is required.


The updated one-woman stage adaptation of Your Negro Tour Guide draws heavily from columns and National Public Radio commentaries collected in Kathy Y. Wilson’s book, Your Negro Tour Guide: Truths in Black & White based on her former CityBeat column. Throwing a glaring light on misguided notions of natural Black beauty, Black homophobia, intra-racial bigotry, and other cultural stereotypes, this play allows us, once and for all, to laugh at every secret we’ve held against and sideways glance we’ve cast at “The Other,” whoever they happen to be. Please note: this performance will begin after the intermission that follows I Shall Not Be Moved. No additional ticket is required.


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Tiny Beautiful Things

based on the book by Cheryl Strayed

adapted for the stage by Nia Vardalos

May 28–June 25, 2022

Based on the acclaimed book by Cheryl Strayed (author of the bestseller Wild), Tiny Beautiful Things is a funny and deeply touching exploration of resilience following the then-struggling writer as she took over the unpaid, anonymous position of an advice columnist named Sugar. At first unsure of herself, she finds a way to weave her own life experiences together to help those seeking guidance. Brilliantly adapted for the stage by Nia Vardalos, the Academy Award-nominated writer and star of My Big Fat Greek Wedding, this captivating and uplifting play surges with emotion and was described by Variety as “a theatrical hug in turbulent times.” This show is about reaching when you’re stuck, recovering when you’re broken, and finding the courage to ask the questions that are hardest to answer. 


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Photo credits | Masthead, Set of Pipeline (Ryan Kurtz); Tickets, Bryant Bentley, Burgess Byrd, & Leslie Goddard Baum in Detroit ’67 (Mikki Schaffner); Subscriptions, cast of in Hedwig and the Angry Inch (Ryan Kurtz); Plan Your Visit, Kathleen Wise in Grounded (Ryan Kurtz)