Playwright attempts to bring MLK ‘to life’
Playwright Katori Hall says her job is to put human beings - not saints - on the stage.
In Hall’s new Broadway play The Mountaintop, starring Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett, Dr. Martin Luther King receives no special treatment. The Reverend King is stripped of his superhero status and portrayed as a man who smoked, drank and was a shameless flirt. He has holes in his socks and his feet smell. One moment he's a grand orator and lecturer; the next he’s chauvinistic and self-assured, at times even acutely paranoid, grave and forsaken.
"It just brings him to life," Hall says, "and brings back the desire to push forward and continue his legacy, and rethink where we are as human beings, where we are as Memphians. He's not a statue."
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