This review originally appeared on WorldOfJoel.com
Over the last couple of years, I've become more and more enraptured with the theater. In fact, one of the first musicals I saw that truly inspired and spoke to me was Lin-Manuel Miranda's In the Heights (I didn't even realize Lin-Manuel Miranda was the creator of In the Heights until I read this book). We saw that musical on a whim and fell in love. After all the buzz surrounding Hamilton, I thought the best way to close out a tumultuous 2016 would be to read the book on how Hamilton was made.
The first half of Hamilton: The Revolution is far and away the better half. The book goes through the very onset of the idea of creating something musical around Hamilton, starting with the mixtape being performed at the White House for President Obama. As the development of Hamilton into a musical begun the stories of the creation, the cutting floor, and how the entire production was developed was fascinating. As a patron, you come in, sit down, and are entertained for two to three hours. But as the creator, the project is so much more than that and hearing about Lin-Manuel Miranda's process was nothing short of magical in its own right.
I listened to the audiobook version of Hamilton: The Revolution and took my time with it. Anytime a song was mentioned in the book I would hit pause on the audiobook, switch over to Spotify and listen to the song in its entirety and go back to the book. It helped me gain more context for the stories surrounding each of the songs and the decisions made around each and every one of them. If you're going to read or listen to this book I highly recommend doing it.
Towards the end of Hamilton: The Revolution when the show began at the Public House and moved to Broadway the stories were less about creativity and more around the buzz surrounding the show. These stories although interesting began to sound more like a hype train for the show rather than a retrospective on its journey. Now having read Hamilton: The Revolution I can say that I am even more enthusiastic to go see it performed. The music is nothing short of brilliant, and this was a nice accompaniment to a performance that has really captivated the world.
I'm the Owner & Editor in Chief of Darkstation.com. After spending seven years as the reviews editor I took over the site in 2010. The rest is history. Now I work with our amazing staff to bring you the best possible video game coverage. Oh and I really like sports games.