On Sunday Maria, Justin, Tommy, Emily, Callie, Theresa, and I caught the afternoon matinee of "Hamilton" at the PrivateBank Theatre in the Loop area of downtown Chicago,
Guess who arrived at the theater first?
The performance was all the things one hears about this musical: Beautiful. Uplifting. Inspiring. Educational. Worth the $177 price of a ticket.
And though I'd listened to the "Hamilton" soundtrack dozens of times, knew every word and could have sung along with every song - and did sing along with a couple of them, as did others in the audience - I was amazed at how, seeing and hearing it performed live, this musical sprung to life for me in a whole new and wonderful way in the powerful voices of the singers, the beautiful harmonizations, arias, use of counterpoint, the complex rhythms, the dancers, the clarity of the orchestra music, and, of course, seeing played out with real people a story that up until now I'd only been seeing in my mind, all done to perfection, not a missed beat, step, or line.
But something else I took away from this performance of "Hamilton" was a feeling of gratitude that in this day and age when children in this country are programed to value above all careers in technology, medicine and business, when they're pushed by parents to excel in sports while their art and music education languishes, when the arts and music are the first subjects to be axed on the altar of education budgeting because our society as a whole does not value these subjects, it's a miraculous wonder that children in this country still grow up to become professional singers, dancers, musicians, choreographers, set designers, costume-makers, composers, writers, and directors of the caliber that can produce a masterpiece such as "Hamilton."
Most of the cast of "Hamilton" were people of color,
After "Hamilton," who will compose the next great musical opportunity for brilliant performers of color?