Somebody has finally thought about the children.
Tickets to the hit Broadway musical Hamilton will be made exclusively available to 20,000 New York City public school students — for the right price of $10. The show’s producers have collaborated with the Rockefeller Foundation to make the initiative possible through a $1.46 million grant. Aimed at the city’s eleventh-graders studying American history, the program will stage its first exclusive matinee performance on April 13, 2016, with subsequent stagings running into 2017.
Not only are students treated to a special showing of the massively successful musical detailing the life of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton — which won the Voice’s Obie award for Best New American Theater Work in May — they’ll spend the morning before the show engaging with the cast, with the chance to perform their own Hamilton-inspired pieces and to speak with some of the actors in a pre-show Q&A, making this the best field trip to ever exist.
Hamilton’s creator and star, Lin-Manuel Miranda, has made previous efforts to ensure accessibility to his show regardless of financial means. Before each Hamilton performance, 24 prime seats are offered by lottery for $10. Moreover, Miranda began providing #Ham4Ham pre-show performances for fans unsuccessful in the lottery, wherein he’s joined by various Broadway guests to produce a quick, social-media-frenzy-inducing performance outside the theater.
The musical has been a raging success since it premiered Off-Broadway in February at the Public Theater. It made the leap to Broadway in August with its transfer to the Richard Rodgers Theatre. Miranda wrote the lyrics to all of the music featured in Hamilton — nearly 50 songs — since praised nearly universally for their fusion of hip-hop, r&b, and historical references. Plus, NYC gets its fair share of shout-outs, including in the number “Satisfied,” which features this tongue-twisting verse: “I’m the oldest and the wittiest/And the gossip in New York City is insidious/And Alexander is penniless/That doesn’t mean I want him any less.” The oldest and wittiest certainly have a lot to teach the kids of New York, and it’s great that Hamilton continues to go above and beyond when it comes to reaching out to its fans.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on October 27, 2015