Tuesday, 26 July 2016

How Hamilton helped me through the last stage of uni and my favourite things about it.

If you have me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter, I think you'll know that I love Hamilton. I wanted to write and they say to write about what you love, so here is a kinda long (but picture-filled), kinda rambling, but very excited post about my love for Hamilton. It's also a great place to start if you have heard about it (or seen me go on about it) and want to find out more.


January 5th 2016. I was preparing for my last full term at university. I was sitting at the table looking at Star Wars memes, avoiding writing my dissertation. Suddenly I see the most bizarre, but absolutely hilarious Star Wars fan-video that seemed perfect for my type of humour.

What took me wasn’t the implication that Poe and Finn were in love (because I know they are, I don’t need people telling me they’re not or that I’m reading too much into it. It’s a film. It’s art. I can read it this way), it was the song. It sounded like a musical and I LOVE musicals despite only seeing a few in my lifetime. As an always curious investigator, I very quickly found that it was from a recent musical called Hamilton, about the life of one of the founding fathers of America Alexander Hamilton . I’m not American, so my knowledge about America is quite limited but I still hadn’t heard of this guy. I listened to a couple of songs (Helpless, Satisfied, The Schuyler Sisters and Alexander Hamilton) and suddenly downloaded the whole soundtrack for my iPod as I was soon returning to university. I soon discovered that no one really knows about Hamilton, that was until Lin-Manuel Miranda created Hamilton.

One week later (I'm writing a letter nightly, now my life gets better every letter that you write me...) I knew the words to a few songs. A month later I knew everything there was to know about how Lin-Manuel Miranda had created this play (he read a Alexander Hamilton autobiography and saw the whole production in his head with an RnB soundtrack). Two months later I was getting everyone I knew to listen to it, finding people online to follow who knew more about it and following the cast and crew on social media. By April I was obsessed and it seems the whole world is too.

I can honestly say that Hamilton helped me with the last few months of university and the beginning of my post-university life. The soundtrack keeps me engaged with writing, makes me realise how loving what you love is FINE, and that art, culture and history are all something we should and can be passionate about.

I could go on and on about Hamilton in this post, but listen to the soundtrack, follow the magnificent Lin-Manuel on all social media platforms and get watching the limited amount of performances online – you’ll soon love it too. Don’t believe me? See how these elders LOVED it.

I’m going to post my favourite lyrics (from a beautiful tumblr page that I will credit) and some of the best fan things I've found online. Oh and once you love Hamilton, the original Star Wars clip becomes a whole lot funnier when you realise that BB-8 is Angelicaaaaaaa).

And when I meet George Lucas, I’m ‘a compel him to include women in the sequel, WORK!✨
#Force4Ham is the BEST cross-over ever.

Seeing as my degree was in the arts, nothing felt better than listening to Hamilton talk about writing or being creative. This really helped me with my degree.

Aaron Burr is not the villain in our history, he was flawed but so was Hamilton. He also has some of the best lines of the musical. When I hear this I think about the family and friends I've lost, or the horrible things going on in the world were innocent people die. It makes me cry, but that's the beauty of LMM's writing. It's so real.

This man will be our William Shakespeare.

It's been 7 months since I fell in love with this soundtrack and I go through phases of loving different songs. Burn is currently my go to song to sing as I drive because it's so passionate. Phillipa Soo is a wonderful singer and I cannot wait to hear more from her soon. (She's set to star as Améile in the musical Améile soon and I can't wait to hear her songs.)

Yorktown is another current favourite. It's great and PLEASE watch the Tony performance of it. Nothing will get you more pumped. This line in particular gets me in the heart. Maybe it's because I know LMM is a father to a young boy so you can see and hear the passion in him, or it's just because I'm an emotional person. Probably the latter.

This ain't wrong.

One of my absolute favourite lines. I think it's because of the current issues within the world about immigrants. It's a word that has somehow become linked with negativity. It's an insult in a way, but it shouldn't be. Hamilton was an immigrant who came and changed History.

This whole song is my favourite, but I love this bit because it's so relevant to today. I'm unsure on exact history concerning how feminist Alexander Hamilton and other people were, but there's no doubt Hamilton is a feminist musical. These girls are intelligent and looking for a mind at work!

The girls.

This recurring theme throughout the musical is marvellous. I love it because it looks at the musical AND Hamilton's life as a narrative and Eliza decides as and when she wants to be part of it. I also love this idea (or reason?!) as to why Eliza's letters have never been found. She didn't want anyone to see them.

The family theme is really important to me. I adore Angelica's love for Eliza, despite everything.

I could go on and on about Hamilton, but I doubt people have even read this far. Listen to the soundtrack, watch the Elders React video and watch some performances. I do not think that anyone could not like Hamilton. Even if you don't like musicals, don't like RnB, don't like History - there is still so much to love about this musical.

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