A hip-hop musical based on a bestselling biography of a historical American political figure? It sounds like a punchline from an eighties RomCom (think The Tall Guy’s “Elephant: The Musical”). However, this is no punchline. This is real life. And not only is a very successful musical based on Ron Chernow’s 2004 book, Alexander Hamilton, but as Fast Company points out, the play “isn’t just a hit musical. It’s one of those rare cultural phenomena that reaches beyond its genre and infiltrates the broader conversation. Fourth-graders love the show as much as 80-year-olds. Hip-hop fans and history buffs alike are giddy over its inspirational, intricately rhymed retelling of the founding father’s complicated relationships with Aaron Burr, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and more.”
Like everyone else, Kirkus Reviews loved the original book: “A splendid life of an enlightened reactionary and forgotten Founding Father. Literate and full of engaging historical asides. By far the best of the many lives of Hamilton now in print, and a model of the biographer’s art.”
And, obviously, Tony judges loved it, too, awarding it 11 Tonys, including best musical.