If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, or have talked to me in real life, you know that I’ve been a tiny bit obsessed with a new musical called Hamilton, written by Lin-Manuel Miranda, who also stars in the show as Alexander Hamilton. The show’s premise? The life (and death) of founding father Alexander Hamilton, told through a variety of musical styles (from Broadway to hip-hop, with a whole lot of other influences and a ton of references), performed by a diverse cast.
If you live here in NYC, Hamilton has become ubiquitous — everyone is talking about it. The show ran at the Public Theater, off-Broadway, this winter into spring, and opened on Broadway at the Richard Rodgers Theater this summer. I bought tickets to see the show at the Public way back in December, and in early March, just before seeing it, I bought tickets to see it on Broadway in August. All of us who have been following the show knew before we saw it that something special was happening here.
If you’ve been paying attention to Broadway this year, there’s an obvious frontrunner for the Tony Awards (and no, despite how much I’ve been talking about it here and in real life, it’s not Hamilton, which doesn’t start its Broadway run till later this summer). It’s another show that started at the Public Theater, a musical based on Alison Bechdel’s graphic novel memoir Fun Home. Before seeing the show, I knew this: Alison Bechdel created the Bechdel test*, she’s a lesbian, her father committed suicide, and she grew up in a funeral home (hence, Fun Home).
*To pass the Bechdel test, a film must have two named female characters who talk to each other about something other than a man. Sadly not that many movies pass the test!
Fun Home is a one-act musical performed in the round at Circle in the Square Theatre. From its format to its subject matter to its cast, which includes Alison at three different ages, it’s a unique production.
Looking for my Broadway production review? Go here!
Everyone is talking about Hamilton the musical, a new show at the Public Theater, and they should be. Okay, “everyone” might be 1. all my friends who love theater as much as I do and 2. all the people I follow on Twitter, but it really is getting a ton of buzz, and it deserves it. I saw it on Sunday March 22, with my best friend, who was visiting from California. We bought the tickets way back in December, before the show was extended, because we knew that was the weekend she could come out to visit and we both wanted to see it. She’d been excited about it for ages, as had one of my friends here in NYC, since they’re both huge fans of Lin-Manuel Miranda, who wrote and stars in Hamilton and is best known for In the Heights.