Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton the musical tells the story of American founding father Alexander Hamilton using traditional musical theatre infused with hop-hop and rap.
Hamilton the musical has a book, music and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda and is based on Ron Chernow’s biography of Alexander Hamilton whose face features on the American ten-dollar bill.
Hamilton fast became a cultural phenomenon, in part due to casting of a mix of actors of colour in the roles that might have traditionally been played by caucasian actors. It has been described by Lin-Manuel as “American then, as told by America now!”
Hamilton the musical started life as the Hamilton Mix Tape which was supposed to be a concept album of a life told in hip hop but this quickly developed into a stage musical after the video of Miranda performing the title track at the White House for the Obamas went viral.
Hamilton premiered off-Broadway at New York’s Public Theatre. After a sold-out critically acclaimed season, the show transferred to Broadway’s Richard Rodgers Theatre where it is still playing to sell-out houses.
Hamilton won eight Drama Desk Awards including Outstanding Musical, Eleven 2016 Tony Awards and the 2016 Pulitzer Prize For Drama.
On its opening in London at the Victoria Palace Theatre, Hamilton the musical won the Olivier Award for Best Musical and the Best Actor Olivier for Giles Terrera who plays the show’s protagonist Aaron Burr. As this is written, Hamilton has become one of the only musical running during the pandemic with the opening of a production in Australia.
Hamilton was filmed on stage with the original Broadway cast and was streamed on Disney+