By Brian Ives
“Hamilton” star Lin-Manuel Miranda is the man of the hour, whether you’re a Broadway fan or not. People who never go near musical theater have been scrambling to get tickets for his show, which has a mind-blowing 16 Tony Award nominations.
“Since the moment we opened, the excitement has been so crazy,” he tells Laura Heywood (aka BroadwayGirlNYC). “The thing you can’t buy is: people leaving [the theater] and saying, ‘You have to see this!'”
And it’s that excitement — created via word-of-mouth — that has made his hip-hop musical Broadway’s hottest ticket.
For Miranda, his love of musical theater started in sixth grade, when he participated in a production that featured scenes from a number of classic musicals. Among the roles that he landed: Conrad Birdie in “Bye Bye Birdie,” Captain Hook in “Peter Pan”and Bernardo in “West Side Story.” “That’s a lethal dosage of musical theater at age 12!”
During the “Bye Bye Birdie” segment, he recalls, “All the girls had to faint when I sang,” which made sense, as he was playing a fictional rock and roll star.
Understandably, Miranda’s reaction to this was: “I’m doing this for the rest of my life!”
And now, with the success of “Hamilton,” he probably can do that, should he choose to.
See how many awards “Hamilton” wins at the Tony Awards, when they air on June 12 on CBS at 8 pm ET.