What are the best Hamilton songs
Fate has a strange sense of humor at times, and so it came up with the idea of sending a musical about the American Constitution around the world right now. A moment when this constitution is being put to the test by the incumbent president, who cries out for law and order but does not like to adhere to it too much himself. Lin-Manuel Miranda, author, composer and leading actor in one person for "Hamilton", could of course not have suspected this when his hip-hop musical premiered off-Broadway in 2015. The view of the piece is not the same as it was five years ago, when "Hamilton" became an Obama-era phenomenon. The glorification of the American past now has a different aftertaste.
Hamilton was born out of wedlock in the Caribbean - Miranda makes him the progenitor of all immigrants
"Hamilton" is now streaming on Disney Plus, which has a lot to do with the tremendous success, the Pulitzer Awards for the artwork and drama, and with Miranda herself, who used Alexander Hamilton in the 2016 recording, too plays. After that someone else took on the role, then Broadway was closed for Covid-19, so "Hamilton" is coming home to the audience. Miranda is from Puerto Rico, the 51st state of the United States, and his approach here is now to celebrate the only one of the American founding fathers who was not born in the United States as the progenitor of all American immigrants: The Characters are set with a handle in the crucible, George Washington, for example, is black. You can read this in two ways - there have been critical voices that Miranda would level the injustices of American history. But of course he doesn't mean it that way: Here Americans of all origins embrace American history. And as far as this central aspect is concerned, there couldn't have been a more perfect time of release for "Hamilton" as a stream, right in the middle of the "Black Lives Matter" protests.
Born out of wedlock in the Caribbean, Hamilton was the United States' first Secretary of the Treasury from 1789. The reasons why Hamilton, who had actually been pushed out of the limelight by characters like Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, fitted so well with the Obama years in his new discovery by Miranda, appear in the play. He stands for a strong central government in Washington, and he was against slavery and for the naturalization of blacks with all civil rights - Miranda may exaggerate Hamilton's stance a little, but he did not invent it. If Miranda hadn't cast the characters with blacks and Hispanics, he might have been ripped off his musical. Debating politicians on stage? The idea is great, but it has its limits, of course there are a lot of private and semi-public matters - there is a sex scandal! - flowed into the musical numbers. As a text, "Hamilton" is pretty exhausting, a lively song about the duration of the term of office would have been missing.
Not all gags are suitable for a musical triumphant advance around the world. For example, when Hamilton's son Philip meets a duel on the other side of the Hudson, he says, "Everything is legal in New Jersey." A gag that the New York audience can amuse themselves with, because they know that the dodgy gambler's paradise Atlantic City is next door in the state of New Jersey. The performances of King George, who appears as a kind of comically arrogant commentator, are most reminiscent of traditional musicals. But beyond the music, "Hamilton" is above all a sung and danced theater piece - based on a neatly chronologically narrated biography. There isn't much set to see, but some of the ideas are nice, such as the battle scenes in the War of Independence as a dance of the troops. The director Thomas Kail usually limits himself to filming what is happening on stage, with a few carefully interspersed medium-long shots and close-ups. Some American critics have praised it highly - but the image direction does just as much when 3sat shows an opera.
Still, "Hamilton" is an exciting look back from the present, even if you find his look at the main character a little too friendly. The story, however, requires some training - following the details of Hamilton's contribution to the constitution as rap is somewhat difficult, even though there is an astonishing amount of information in the lyrics. And they even rhyme.
Hamilton, USA 2020 - Director: Thomas Kail. Book, music: Lin-Manuel Miranda. With: Miranda, Daveed Diggs, Renée Elise Goldsberry, Philippa Soo. Disney Plus, 162 minutes.
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