Which Hamilton Audience Was the Most Scary for Creator Lin-Manuel Miranda?

News   Which Hamilton Audience Was the Most Scary for Creator Lin-Manuel Miranda?
 
It wasn't the President, Vice-President or the First Lady who were the most intimidating audience members at the critically acclaimed new Lin-Manuel Miranda musical Hamilton, where history meets hip-hop and pop culture permeates the past, as revolutionaries spit rhymes, aristocrats throw down and politicians turn up.

In an interview with grantland.com, creator/star Miranda revealed the two artists who were seated in the same audience during the musical's original Off-Broadway run at the Public Theater.

"So, the scariest show we have done — and it’s all been easy since then — was three weeks at the Public Theater," Miranda explained in the lengthy interview. "Busta Rhymes is in the front row. Listen, this is an unapologetic love letter to hip-hop. [Rappers] didn’t come see In the Heights. A couple people did, Run-D.M.C., a few other old heads that love the genre in any form — they came. I was so nervous, [Busta] was in the front row, he took a redeye to get there. And I remember we were doing 'My Shot,' and back at the Public, it was literally a 'Pass the Courvoisier' line — it was, 'Rise up, don’t this shit make my people wanna rise up' — and I saw him go [mimics big smile] and whisper to Riggs [Morales, a longtime record label A&R].

Busta Rhymes
Busta Rhymes

"My feet are off the ground I’m rapping so hard because, you know, I got into a fistfight to get the last copy of 'Scenario' when I was 13 years old. It’s the only fistfight I’ve ever been in in my life. I was like, Don’t look at Busta, don’t look at Busta. Then I look into the second row and Mandy Patinkin is sitting above Busta Rhymes. If there is a Busta Rhymes of musical theater, it probably is Mandy Patinkin. And it was just fucking crazy, when the people you’ve emptied your pockets to see are seeing you. It’s a crazy feeling. It’s both ennobling and totally humbling and totally terrifying. But after Busta, everything was cool."

Inspired by the book "Alexander Hamilton" by Ron Chernow, the musical fuses the worlds of contemporary and classic to tell the story of America's Founding Father Alexander Hamilton.

The musical officially opened Aug. 6 at the Richard Rodgers Theatre.

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