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Second City's WORDS

By Kari Geltemeyer in Arts & Entertainment on Feb 24, 2005 5:09PM

WORDS from

So what exactly does happen when “an openly gay liberal Black man from a lower-class single-parent home meets a conservative heterosexual Black woman from a middle-class two-parent home”? Comedy duo Straight and Nappy is asking the question of the times and presumably providing the answer at the 4th annual production of Second City’s WORDS variety showcase.

Chicagoist loves community outreach programs of all stars and stripes, especially when comedy’s the forum and casual’s the attire. Presented by Second City Outreach and Diversity in association with DMG Freedom, WORDS brings together improvisers, poets, comedians and actors to celebrate African American Heritage Month. Five ensemble sketch groups are on this year’s slate: KevInda, Pimprov, Soul Fools, Mike and Celisa and the aforementioned Straight and Nappy, made up of Rebecca Jackson and the fabulously named Pip Lilly.

Their mission: to share insights on culture, African American history, and comedy. According to, sketch scenes include a rural couple sharing their view on racial mixing, four outlandish pimps improvising, and a hip hop flow by a Chicago emcee.

“Each year, the show changes by the dynamic and perspective of the cast, giving voice to a new crop of talent, “ says Dionna Griffin, Director of Outreach and Diversity Program. “We’re delighted to have a well-known Chicago emcee, Jeff Baraka, share songs from his debut CD. That's what the WORDS show is all about, bringing everyone together.”

WORDS at Second City
Donny’s Skybox Theatre
1608 North Wells, Piper’s Alley 4th floor
Saturdays 9:00 p.m.
Through Mar. 19
Tickets: $8-$10 at 312-337-3992

Image from