Watch This: 30 Minutes with the ‘Most Exciting Woman in the World,’ Eartha Kitt

On stage or on screen, Eartha Kitt was a mesmerizing talent. And, as we can see in this 2001 interview, she was also a conversationalist with few peers. The performance aspects of great conversation come to the fore here, as she tells her best stories and, along the way, provides a master-class in stage presence.

Don’t start watching this if you don’t have 27 minutes to sit riveted in front of the screen, because she is truly a magnetic force of personality, using her speaking – and purring – voice, her limbs and her eyes with the flair of a great artist.

Topics covered: Orson Welles, Katherine Dunham’s dance company (watch the impromptu moves she uses to illustrate Dunham’s style), her tough upbringing, the resonance of the Catwoman character, her experiences with Black activism, Lady Bird Johnson, the CIA file that called her a “sadistic nymphomaniac,” and more.

Watch and enjoy.

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