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Hamilton the musical: Top five facts

The smash-hit stage show is coming to Victoria next month! 


You've listened to the soundtrack on repeat and registered for tickets months ago. Now, for those lucky fans who actually managed to get hold of tickets, the wait is finally over. In case you didn’t know though, Hamilton is the smash-hit, multi-award-winning hip-hop musical based on the life of founding father Alexander Hamilton. Here are our top five favourite facts that every fan (and would-be fan) should know:


It was inspired by a biography

Lin-Manuel Miranda, the multi-talented composer, lyricist, playwright, and actor behind Hamilton was taking a well-earned holiday in 2008 after the success of his hit musical In the Heights. It was while browsing through an airport bookshop that he stumbled on Ron Chernow’s 2004 biography of Alexander Hamilton. Manuel saw parallels between Hamilton’s life and what he calls ‘the hip-hop narrative’. Soon afterwards he Googled ‘Hamilton hip-hop musical’, fully expecting it to already exist. Thankfully for him, it didn’t. So he ‘got to work’.

It’s a record breaker

In 2016, Hamilton was nominated for an unprecedented 16 Tony awards and ended up scooping an impressive 11. The musical also picked up a prestigious Pulitzer Prize in the same year. 


It was never meant to be a musical

Hamilton started life in 2009 as a project called The Hamilton Mixtape, a collection of songs written by Miranda which would eventually be released in late 2016. Artists who contributed to the Mixtape include Regina Spektor, Alicia Keys and John Legend. The song that would become the show’s opening track, Alexander Hamilton was first performed in 2009 at the White House, where Barack and Michelle Obama gave it a standing ovation.


The coveted title role for the UK run was won by newcomer Jamael Westman

The twenty-five year old south Londoner won the role fresh out of drama school. He has previously starred in Torn at the Royal Court and The White Devil at Sam Wanamaker Playhouse. Talk about a big break.

A film is currently in the pipeline

In February 2017, Miranda confirmed that a film adaptation based on the musical is in the works. So, not to worry if you didn’t manage to get hold of tickets for the live show.

Hamilton opens on Wednesday 6 December at the Victoria Palace Theatre; 

All photos by ©Joan Marcus.