It is almost impossible to encapsulate the remarkable life and accomplishments of Eartha Kitt. Eartha Mae Kitt was ostracized at an early age because of her mixed-race heritage. At eight years old, she was given away by her mother and sent from the South Carolina cotton fields to live with an aunt in Harlem. In New York her distinct individuality and flair for show business manifested itself, and on a friend’s dare, the shy teen auditioned for the famed “Katherine Dunham Dance Troupe.” She won a spot as a featured dancer and vocalist and before the age of twenty, toured worldwide with the company. During a performance in Paris, Miss Kitt was spotted by a nightclub owner and booked as a featured singer at his club. Her unique persona earned her fans and fame quickly, including Orson Welles, who called her “the most exciting woman in the world."
Eartha Kitt’s gifts and talents went far beyond the performing arts. She was a brilliant observer of the world around her, and possessed a mind that was capable of almost unlimited learning and retention. Speaking in five languages and singing in ten, endlessly integrating the natural world around her with her own life, she combined her phenomenal breadth of knowledge with her immense fame and ignited lasting social and political change. Eartha Kitt was a trailblazer of unprecedented courage who set standards for human rights and equality against all odds. Her impact on our world is being felt today more than ever.
Eartha Mae Kitt gave us so many gifts during her precious life. The gift of her singing, her acting, and performing on dozens of recordings and film, and her spirit in the memories of all those fortunate enough to see her perform live. What most people don’t know is that she left us one final gift for the ages: By applying her literary genius to private writings that filled volumes of journals, her insights into the human condition and natural world have been preserved forever. Intense, frugal in their length, and leaving an indelible epiphany on all who read them, the Eartha Kitt Collection are her writings - unabridged, unedited, and presented with stark visual beauty that is impossible to ignore – exactly like Eartha.