Back in June, before committing to The United States Of US Tour, we were lucky enough to secure tickets to see the most coveted musical in the US, Hamilton. Being theatre enthusiasts, it's kind of important to expose ourselves to all things art, and so, the search for tickets began.
This summer we, and many of our friends, were jockeying for tickets, trolling ticket outlets and some sitting in lawn chairs for hours in front of The Private Bank Theatre. Yes, anything to get a seat in Hamilton's house! We happened to be on vacation at the time tickets went on sale, but nothing was keeping us from this show - laptop GO!
We scored tickets after a 45 minute processing wait - Refresh! Refresh! Refresh! The suspense almost knocked us out! [It's the simple things in life, like seeing your ticket confirmation pop up in your inbox.]
Fast forward 5 months...oops, a bit of of a detour needed to be made to our current trip route. Typically if you drive the coast you don't go to Chicago then back down to the gulf, and it's best to take the transit versus walk. Since we were 'living in the moment' it made sense to figure out a way to get to Chicago for this show, no matter where we were at the time.
As time drew near, we made our travel plan and travelled just far enough north to stay south, and fly out. We have childhood friends in Atlanta generous enough to let us park the RV in their driveway - and watch our Bulldog, Meatball. Yes, the holy grail of friends right here people.
...So off to see Hamilton we went!
There are only extreme adjectives to describe this musical experience. Outstanding! Dynamic! Astonishing! Brilliant! You could feel the show's energy penetrate the lobby the moment you opened it's doors. As we entered the house, there were fans were taking pictures of their programs, the stage, their tickets - we were in good company! All of us excited to be a part and be present for this historical event.
The instant the house lights went out, Hamilton and it's audience's interaction, was non-stop. History on steroids infused with rap and ballads! This musical tricked us by not only reminding us the importance of our country's birth, but by teaching us parts in American history we never knew happened. By watching this musical unfold, it is no question how, in his unorthodox way, Lin Manuel made our founding fathers, and their company, larger than life on stage. Lin's quick witted writing and the ability to morph 'boring' characters into legends is exactly what keeps his audiences packed and asking for more.
The best part of this experience was seeing our children's eyes locked on the stage. Every song, each bit of dialogue complimented by the movement - tied them into a hypnotic trance. The laughing, the smiling, the crying - oh the emotions that boiled up during this 3 hour musical - spent us!
We were happy to memorize the entire soundtrack, read the Hamilton musical book, and watch the PBS documentary - secure a Hamil-Souvenir or two - it helped us absorb what was on stage that much more. [Thanks Aunt Kate and Deana Rogers!]
To top off the experience - because our minds weren't blown enough - we made our way to the stage doors. [There is always a chance to get a closer glance at stardom at the stage door.] The actors exited and happily gave autographs and photo opps. It was 2 degrees out and these amazing people who just performed for three hours, took the time for their fans - unbelievable!
We believe the arts are what makes the soul thrive. For us, it helps tie us into a world of hope and tolerance.
We continue to repeat the manta: "When your heart is broken, you take the pieces an make art". We have to believe that this statement holds true on so many levels this day in age.
Our hope is that you all get the chance to experience Hamilton, the musical. If not on stage, then by the soundtrack or script. It will change the way you think about our country and each other.
Ham on friends, Ham on...