123RECAP : Hamilton

story by: Maya Ghavidel

As many students know, the members of the Studio VII theater company are always working tirelessly to produce wonderful content for our community to enjoy. The goal of the company is to develop the lifelong love of theater – that of life and that of the stage.

Students have the opportunity to develop real life skills that can be brought into their everyday activities. Members of the company are deeply encouraged to bring their real experiences in creating lively, complex characters.  The company promotes not only an appreciation for the acting process, but also for all fine arts; since without visual arts, music, and movement or dance, theater would not exist..

“Theater is very important to me because it serves as a place where I can be myself. It gives me the ability to remove myself from the stress of school and life, while getting to portray a character who is completely different from myself,” junior Ellie Dootson said.

Additionally, she believes that it’s important to surround herself with like-minded people who have the same hobbies and interests she does.

“I am really happy that I decided to participate in such a great organization. The dedication everyone has is really inspiring and it pushes me to work hard everyday. Overall, theater to me means happiness! I am very lucky to be apart of such a great group,” she said.

In addition to the growing love of theater and the arts in general in pop culture, the hit Broadway musical Hamilton is creating a deep appreciation for theater itself. Based on the life of founding father Alexander Hamilton, this half-nonfiction half-fiction musical has won a Pulitzer Prize for Drama, Broadway.com’s Audience Award for best musical, and multiple Tony awards. Additionally, the outstanding soundtrack has sold over 2 million copies in the United States alone, and is placed #3 on Billboard’s Billboard 200.

While many view Hamilton as a silly musical about an irrelevant founding father, the musical has hit home for countless fans across the globe.

Hamilton means so many things. Lin-Manuel Miranda (writer of the musical) and his team did revolutionary (pun-intended) work in producing this phenomenal work of artistic genius. The hip-hop style and hyper-relevant lyrics are infectious and stay with you. Of course, I’m not saying anything that hasn’t already been said in this regard, but it’s true. This show has everything you could ask for in writing: double entendre, motifs, symbolism… the list goes on,” Creative Writing teacher Jonathan Frishman said.

Frishman believes that Hamilton can help students and viewers today better understand our country’s history better.

“It’s like what Daveed Diggs (actor who plays Thomas Jefferson/Marquis de Lafayette) said about Thomas Jefferson. On the one hand he wrote this great statement about how men are created equal, and yet “he sucks.” What we can take away from this musical, and really history at large, is that we should stop deifying these very human people and remember them for who they were. They didn’t get along. They fought. They slandered one another, and that is part of the American DNA. Once we focus our eyes on 1800, the world of 2016 seems to come into more focus. Oh, and if you didn’t know, now you know, Seven Lakes,” he said.

If you’d like to watch a quick summary of Hamilton, play the video above for a recap of the musical in less than 123 seconds!

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