I’ve been hearing such raving reviews of this play that I can’t wait to have a few hours alone and catch up with it. Thank you Alana for pushing me to do it! And, it goes very well with the story she brought with her.
Alana Lorens (aka Barbara Mountjoy) has been a published writer for over 35 years, including seven years as a reporter and editor at the South Dade News Leader in Homestead, Florida
Weekends being conducted much less outdoors than in recent years makes it a little hard to be excited, right? Well, if your visits to Gettysburg or Williamsburg are on hold, you can still learn a little about history by watching HAMILTON, now available on Disney Plus.
When I first heard about this show, my first thought was, “But I hate rap!” On the other hand, I love musicals. What’s a poor momma to do?
I started small. I watched bits on YouTube. I like Jonathan Groff for other shows, so I definitely liked his work. My daughter, determined to ‘Hamilturn’ me, sent me a CD. Listening to it, the story of this immigrant who did so much of the actual work in setting up the structure of what became America grew on me. Who doesn’t like an underdog story after all?
Hamilton was played by Lin-Manuel Miranda at the time this was filmed, although that wasn’t the original plan. Javier Munoz was set to play the “ten-dollar Founding Father without a father” but got cancer. He would later come back to take the role when Miranda was ready to move on. Several of the other cast members work double duty—Daveed Diggs plays Lafayette in the first act and Thomas Jefferson in the second. Anthony Ramos plays John Laurens in the first, and Hamilton’s son, Phillip, in the second. Jasmine Cephas Jones plays Schuyler daughter Peggy in the first, and Hamilton’s temptress Maria Reynolds in the second. We get to see very different performances by each actor, depending on who they’re playing.
Now it may be true that not all parts of HAMILTON are factual. *gasp* You have to remember that Lin-Manuel Miranda is trying to tell a good story at the same time. It may also be true that the show was a product of its times. It was a different America several years ago. But in no way does that make it less worthwhile.
The stage itself has some interesting facets—part of it spins, which creates additional movement on stage, especially important during Angelica’s Rewind. Even the background changes scene to scene to keep up with the “growing” of America. The production is A-plus, the music and choreography on point. It’s definitely worth a watch, if only to see what all the fuss has been about.
For more on the show check out the following
And to keep the musical thread, here’s Alana’s story.
That Girl’s The One I Love by Alana Lorens released a few years ago in the Short stories, Collection romance.
Leyla Brand has one perfect day in her life: the day she meets rock singer Arran Lake at the Bele Chere Festival in Asheville. They have so much in common, Leyla is sure they are soulmates and will have a future together.
The very next morning, when Arran receives the call to hit the big time, he vanishes into the world of California rock and roll to become an international star, leaving her behind. Only a few phone calls keep them in touch — until his phone is disconnected. After that, all she has of him is every new song that hits the charts.
Five years later, she gets a message on the Internet from an unfamiliar address. Someone wants to know if she’s the Leyla of Bele Chere. Should she open that door and discover who this might be? Who else could it be? And if it is Arran, why does he want to contact her now, after all this time? Will he just break her heart again?
Leyla Brand leaned against the rough bark of the tree trunk, her eyes squinted against the over-bright light of the midday Saturday sun, soaking in the rock and roll notes of the Copper Moon band. Feeling the sizzle of summer on her skin, she sipped her frozen strawberry margarita, then held the tall, cold plastic cup against her forehead. Ooooh, yes. Blessed relief.
She’d been a fan, almost a groupie, for the past several months, after she’d heard them play in a local bar. Their covers were all right, but their originals, written by lead singer Arran Lake, spoke directly to Leyla’s heart. He was easy on the eyes, too. He stood about five feet ten, with Scandinavian-toned blond hair that curled around his ears, soft blue eyes that seemed to caress Leyla when they made contact with hers, and a casual vibe in his choice of clothing that let her know he was perfectly comfortable in his own skin.
I’d be pretty comfortable next to his skin, too.
Arran finished the song to a smattering of polite applause and a couple wolf whistles. Almost time. Leyla drained her margarita for courage.
“We’re gonna take a break, y’all! Stay thirsty!” He raised a tall glass of something brown, and the crowd cheered. It could have been bourbon or scotch, but Leyla bet it was sweet iced tea, otherwise known as the house wine of the South. Arran wasn’t a big drinker, even in bars, as far as she’d been able to see. She’d made it her business to notice everything she could about him in the two dozen times she’d seen him perform. She’d interrogated waitresses, managers, anyone she could see had meaningful contact with him, gathering bits and snips of information. Most importantly, that he wasn’t dating anyone at the moment.
She got to her feet, on the move toward the low stage. The group would take fifteen minutes to duck out of the sun, get something cold to drink and mingle with fans. Well, she was a fan. She intended to mingle—or maybe a little more. If she could arrange it.
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Alana, such an interesting post and a good recommendation for the musical, which I admit to not having seen. I do have a problem with its not being factual, though. Those of us who took (and remember) our history can take the non-factual bits and adjust them i our minds. However, too many young people today do NOT get their history, and they will see the play and believe all of it. I have the same problem with movies based on real life–they aren’t totally real. But people come away thinking they are. I’m sure the play is entertaining.
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