When: Mon., Jan. 16 2012
Various venues—Had he not been murdered and instead lived out a normal life span, Martin Luther King would have turned 83 on Sunday. Although he's been dead for nearly 45 years, his legacy continues to be honored and explored. The last year saw his private life imagined and dramatized in a play, The Mountaintop (which closes on Broadway Jan. 22), with Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett, and in the film J. Edgar, in which King was the object of harassment and perverse fascination by the title character. Last summer, a King memorial went up in Washington, including a rather Stalin-esque statue by sculptor Lei Yixin; it was officially dedicated in October, with everyone from President Obama to Aretha Franklin in attendance.
Events on MLK Day in the Triangle center on a 7:30 a.m. interfaith prayer breakfast at the Sheraton Imperial Hotel in RTP. There will be marches in Raleigh (11 a.m.), Durham (10:30 a.m.) and Chapel Hill (9 a.m.). At noon in Raleigh's Meymandi Concert Hall is an ecumenical service, and there will be a musical celebration there at 5:30 p.m. At 6 p.m. in Durham's Kings Park International Church is a religious service in King's honor. Throughout the Triangle, the day is also the occasion for community service in King's memory. —David Fellerath