Misericordia Presents ‘The Mountaintop’: A Table Reading


From left, Professor Matthew Hinton, Martin Latoya and Alex Jones answer questions from the audience after the table reading of “The Mountaintop” by Katori Hall.

Megan Oldak, Print Editor

A virtual table reading of “The Mountaintop,” a fictional account of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s last night on earth, was just one of the events held on the Misericordia campus during Black History Month.

The story begins with King arriving at the Lorraine Motel after delivering his “I Have Been to the Mountaintop” speech. He meets a maid named Camae and their small talk quickly turns into serious discussions about fear, mortality and hope. The story presents a unique perspective of King as a flawed human begin.

The event was organized by Matthew Hinton, assistant director of the Student Success Center, and Laine Little, director of the art gallery.

For the table reading, Hinton read stage directions, Alex Jones read for the role of King and Martin Latoya read for the role of Camae. During the question and answer portion of the event, the cast was asked, “Was it difficult preparing for these roles due to the historical significance?” to which the cast answered there was a great deal of preparation for each role.

Alex Jones “felt afraid” at first to take on the role of King, explaining that, because he doesn’t look like King, he was worried that would affect how the audience perceived his performance. To overcome this, Jones chose to focus on the emotions of the story, specifically how he portrayed the emotional state King was most likely experiencing.

Latoya stated the most challenging part for her was finding and maintaining what would have been an accurate dialect for the time period, expressing that staying as historically accurate as possible was most important to her. She explained the dialect was difficult to uphold because of how different it was from her own.

For information about other Black History Month events at Misericordia, contact The Office for Mission Integration & Institutional Diversity.