Lin-Manuel Miranda wants 'to send a bold message' by returning to 'Hamilton' in Puerto Rico
The "Hamilton" creator said taking his smash hit Broadway musical to Puerto Rico was always a dream. But it became urgent after Hurricane Maria's devastation.
Last summer, Lin-Manuel Miranda took his final Broadway bow as the title character in Hamilton. But it turns out it wasn't his last performance. Miranda will reprise the role – in Puerto Rico.
Hamilton, the Broadway smash hit that won 11 Tonys, a Grammy and the Pulitzer Prize, will come to the island with Miranda in January 2019, starting at the University of Puerto Rico's theater, the school announced Wednesday.
In a statement, Miranda said taking Hamilton to Puerto Rico "is a dream that I've had" since the show he created first opened in 2015.
"When I last visited the island, a few weeks before Hurricane Maria, I had made a commitment to not only bring the show to Puerto Rico, but also return again to the title role," Miranda said, according to Playbill. "In the aftermath of Maria we decided to expedite the announcement of the project to send a bold message that Puerto Rico will recover and be back in business, stronger than ever."
Miranda, whose parents moved to New York City from Puerto Rico, has been a vocal advocate for Puerto Rican relief efforts – and a fierce critic of President Trump's response to the natural disaster. He's tweeted harsh broadsides about Trump's comments, include telling the president, "You're going straight to hell."
"That's not how I talk. This is not an everyday occurrence," Miranda told the New York Times about the tweets. "Then again, I've never seen a sitting president attack the victims of a natural disaster." He then added: "I'm not that guy. But it was the only thing I could think to say in the face of an attack on a people already besieged."
Miranda also has rallied financial support for Puerto Rico. He convened a group of Latin music all-stars for a charity track, "Almost Like Praying," to raise money for hurricane relief. He also arrived on the island on Tuesday and announced a $2.5 million hurricane recovery fund, via a nonprofit group partnership.
"The road to recovery in Puerto Rico is not a simple one nor is it one that relies solely on aid from the American government on the mainland," Miranda said, the Associated Press reported. "Together, we will cultivate, fund and execute practical and actionable solutions to kick-start and continue the island's road to recovery for years to come."
Hurricane Maria ravaged Puerto Rico seven weeks ago, and hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses still remain without power. Many buildings suffered damage, including UPR's theater, Teatro UPR. Playbill reports the theater will undergo repairs ahead of "Hamilton," which will run Jan. 8-27, 2019.