Audiences will be transported to 1968 Memphis during The Mountaintop, a drama produced by Charleston’s PURE Theatre at Harbison Theatre at Midlands Technical College on Saturday, Nov. 8, 2014 at 7:30 p.m.
Regarded by the Charleston City Paper as “Charleston’s go-to for the best in contemporary theatre,” PURE Theatre will bring The Mountaintop to Harbison Theatre’s stage during its tour as the inaugural production of a new statewide touring circuit, developed this year in an initiative led by Harbison Theatre with other presenting theatres in the South Carolina Presenters Network. By collaborating with producing theatres like PURE, Harbison Theatre hopes to expand and ensure access to excellent, professional theatre in all South Carolina communities.
With a powerful dialogue that delves into Martin Luther King Jr.’s fundamental humanity, the play takes place on April 3, 1968, in Memphis’ Lorraine Motel, Room 306, where Dr. King spent the final evening of his life. The story consists of only two characters: King and hotel maid Camae, who turns his room service call into a stirring and poignant discourse marked with moments of levity and humor.
The Mountaintop depicts King as a man exhausted from his travels and concerned for the safety of his family, an image that strays from the common view of King as an always-poised, indestructible public figure.
“I love this play because it shows one of our country’s greatest leaders as the person he was when no one was watching,” says Katie Fox, Executive Director of Harbison Theatre at Midlands Technical College.
“Martin Luther King Jr. accomplished amazing works and led thousands of people, but he was also a person who questioned himself, made mistakes and sought forgiveness,” notes Fox. “When we remember these things about him, we also remind ourselves that though we may experience moments of weakness and doubt, we are called on to be our best for each other.”
It has been a longtime professional goal of Fox’s to make it easier for all communities to have access to high-quality theatre, believing that everyone benefits from involvement with professional artists – yet it can be hard for rural areas and smaller communities to afford top-rated, artistically strong touring groups.
As a part of this new statewide touring circuit, The Mountaintop will be presented in five theaters in Camden, Beaufort, Manning, Cheraw and here at Harbison Theatre in Columbia, the first theatre to invest in the circuit, giving it seed money to make smaller theatres' commitments easier. Fox and fellow participating presenters are optimistic that the statewide touring initiative will be successful with The Mountaintop, and expand in years ahead.
The Mountaintop is one of 9 shows selected for Harbison Theatre’s 2014-2015 Signature Series. Individual show tickets and The Flex Pass, offering a 10% discount with the purchase of 4 or more tickets, can be purchased at www.HarbisonTheatre.org.
Tickets are available via phone at 803-407-5011, or in person at the Harbison Theatre Box Office, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The box office also will open two hours prior to each show in the Signature Series.
About Harbison Theatre
Rooted in the performing arts, Harbison Theatre at Midlands Technical College offers programs and productions that encourage reflection, examination and discovery; and that provide entertainment, education and opportunity to professionals, learners and community members in all stages of life. To learn about upcoming events, purchase tickets, or pursue sponsorship and volunteer opportunities with Harbison Theatre, please visit www.HarbisonTheatre.org.