PlayMakers, Triad Stage collaborate on new play about Martin Luther King Jr.

This fall, two of North Carolina’s leading theater companies, PlayMakers Repertory Company and Triad Stage, will co-produce the regional premiere of “The Mountaintop” by Katori Hall. The play focuses on the last night in the life of Martin Luther King Jr.

It is the theater companies’ first collaboration of this kind.

PlayMakers, the professional theater in residence at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, will present the play as its main-stage season opener Sept. 18-Oct. 6. Then the play will be mounted in Greensboro by Triad Stage Oct. 20-Nov. 10.

Set on April 3, 1968 in Memphis at the Lorraine Motel, the story unfolds on the historic last night in the life of the civil rights icon. A visitation from a mysterious woman leads King to confront his innermost thoughts and fears on the stormy evening before his assassination.

“The Mountaintop” premiered in London (2009) to great critical acclaim, winning the Olivier Award for Best New Play. A hit Broadway run followed, starring Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett. The Independent (London) called it “breathtaking, hilarious and heart-stopping.”

The PlayMakers-Triad Stage co-production offers the region a unique opportunity to experience the play throughout the fall. The production will be directed by PlayMakers associate artist Raelle Myrick-Hodges, who helmed the production of “A Raisin in the Sun” at PlayMakers last season.

The PlayMakers performances will be in the Paul Green Theatre at UNC’s Center for Dramatic Art, 250 Country Club Road in Chapel Hill. For information, call (919) 962-PLAY (7529), or visit Tickets are currently available as part of PlayMakers’ 2013-2014 subscription packages. Single tickets will go on sale in late July.

Triad Stage performances will be at The Pyrle Theater, 232 South Elm St. in Greensboro. For information, call the Triad Stage Box Office at (336) 272-0160 or toll-free at (866) 579-TIXX (8499), or visit Tickets are currently available as part of Triad Stage’s 2013-2014 season pass package. Single tickets go on sale Aug. 5.

Based in UNC’s College of Arts and Sciences, PlayMakers is the Carolinas’ premiere resident professional theater company.

Triad Stage is a professional not-for-profit theater company based in Greensboro’s downtown historic district.

Both theaters have been named among the “Best Regional Theatres in America” by New York’s Drama League.