Culture

Lin-Manuel Miranda discusses how his musical career is interwoven with themes of immigration, gentrification and U.S. political history

"Hamilton is still about the origin of our country. Those fights are still the fights we are having." Lin-Manuel Miranda talks to Jorge Ramos about Hamilton's Friday premiere in Puerto Rico, his latest role in Mary Poppins Returns and the upcoming movie version of In the Heights.
11 Ene 2019 – 12:23 PM EST

Lin-Manuel Miranda has become one of the most influential young Latino voices in Hollywood today thanks to the success of In the Heights and Hamilton. Now his career is blossoming with new appearances in the movie Mary Poppins Returns. And a movie of In the Heights is due to start filming later this year.

Miranda is fascinated by history and recalls how issued raised a decade ago in In the Heights remain highly relevant today.

"What's exciting is I feel that the world has caught up to the show. We talked about gentrification, we talked about immigration," he tells Jorge Ramos's Facebook Watch show, Real America. The lyrics in the original In the Heights in 2008, includes the lines:

" What about immigration, politicians be hatin',
Racism in this nation's gone from latent to blatant."

Miranda asks; "Is that not more true now in 2018 than it was in 2008. I feel that the world has caught up to the things we were talking about in that show."


The story of Hamilton is also a good example of how history comes around, he says, noting that for many years one of the nation's seven 'Founding Fathers' was a much-maligned figure is U.S. history.

"One of the themes of the musical is that you cannot control what people say about you after you exist, and Hamilton was survived by his enemies," he says.

A good example of that is how the musical was originally born during the administration of President Barack Obama, and Hamilton first performed some of his early material at the White House in front of the president and first lady. Obama famously stated about the musical; "What an incredible gift these folks have given to the United States of America."

Today, Miranda jokes that the Trump administration " is not going to be calling me to show up at the White House any time soon ... That's also what history is. We rise and fall depending on who's in power and who's not."

After the election of Donald Trump the musical "took on a new urgency," he said. "It's still about the origin of our country. Those fights are still the fights we are having."

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