On April 4, 1968, Martin Luther King Jr. was shot to death on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis. Since then, Room 306, where he’d spent the previous night, has become a shrine. “There are very few places on Earth where time stopped,” says David Gallo, the scenic designer for The Mountaintop, a play set on the last night of King’s life that opens October 13. Since 1991, the motel has been the National Civil Rights Museum, and the room, virtually untouched, is viewable through glass. For his work on the play, Gallo was allowed inside the room, spending eight hours measuring and photographing every fixture, wall panel, and cigarette burn. He walked us through his work.
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