In the Broadway hit, eleven-time Tony award-winning and Grammy. Award-winning production Hamilton: An American Musical, history comes to life through the different voices and the change in tone that moves from self-pity to action in revolution. The dramatic display allows characters like Alexander Hamilton, George Washington, Aaron Burr and Thomas Jefferson to be presented as brave and realistic historical figures and founding fathers. The musical praises Hamilton’s hard work, his academic focus, his immigrant status, and his reluctance to give up or quit. Even though the play dramatizes history, overall, it is an interesting way to learn because it captures the attention of the audience and tells American stories from multiple points of view, and the inclusive casting allows audiences from all backgrounds to enjoy.
A musical production like Hamilton is an effective way to learn history because the songs are both catchy and carry truth. Songs like, “Alexander Hamilton,” “You’ll Be Back,” and “My Shot” tell the story of young Alexander Hamilton and the causes for the revolution, such as the taxes imposed by the British. Musicals can be a good way for a person to follow the storyline as they watch the actors perform. Also, the music and dancing are entertaining as the people react history. The entertainment factor allows people to remember details about history that they may not remember when studying alone. Hamilton is also good because of the different tones it has for each character which keeps you focused; the play also applies to a large group of people. Another effective aspect of the musical is that it takes history to a new audience, literally. By having people listen to a musical it is giving a new sort life to history. By putting music to a historical event, the artistic world is able to experience history on its own stage. I think that it is great to have different genres mixed into the musical so that the experience of Hamilton can be related by diverse crowds. The entertainment aspect of the musical is that it fits in today’s society and it answers a call to those learn better through visual and auditory ways.
A musical production like Hamilton can be a poor way to learn history, because it has different people singing and that could distract someone when they have no idea who is talking. They also cannot tell which character is represented by each actor and who is the one talking is they have to little to no theatrical background. It focuses on only the entertainment and not the history. None of the character are portrayed as they really are. For example, Alexander Hamilton was a short white male with red hair while the Broadway showed him as a Puerto Rican. This shows how history can be distorted inn order to cast popular or experienced actors. The play focuses on Hamilton’s abolitionist thoughts whereas in in reality many of the founding fathers, including Hamilton had slaves. Historical inaccuracies among the characters do not help with learning about the real and true history. I understand that Broadway is a very diverse place, but history should keep to what is real.
Although the entertainment value of the musical is high, it can be too much and may cause people to not fully understand what is going on. Then ineffective nature of the musical is that with too much going on the history that is trying to be taught is getting caught up in all of the commotion of what is going on onstage. Also, the language that is being used, especially swear words, add a certain lev el of classlessness. Although that type of language is common it is something that is not normally seen among the historical accounts of these great men that are portrayed in the musical.
I still feel that this is a good and exciting way to learn history; it is interesting and has a lot of ways to keep a person entertained. The information can get stuck in your head because it only takes remembering the to a song; the words in these musicals can be very catchy and rhythmic, which makes learning the information fun and enjoyable. These musicals can be a new way that teachers get students to be more interested in class and help them get the information without either falling to sleep or playing on their phones. This could be a good way for teachers to get students involved or even have them looking forward to coming to class. The students could possibly even play games out of the songs and could quiz the lyrics and the meaning behind them. The music has different styles which makes more people interested in it because its not just rap and its not just sad music. The music is reaching out to all types of races and wants everyone to be involved and interested with what went on in history. This way of learning about history can be extremely helpful when it comes to learning about the details of history based off historical facts.
The production of Hamilton tells American stories from multiple points of views, and the inclusive casting audience from all backgrounds to enjoy it. The producers tried to touch everyone that they possibly could, no matter the background of the audience, we all are a part of the American history in some way. No matter what race you are, audiences can enjoy the musical and understand the history in a new and creative way.