ENTERTAINMENT: The musical Hamilton’s release on Disney+ triggers large response

On July 3, 2020, the musical Hamilton, written by Lin-Manuel Miranda, came out on Disney+. Hamilton first came out on Broadway several years ago on August 6, 2015, where it won 11 Tony Awards, including for Best Musical and Best Leading Actor in a musical.

Hamilton is based on the Founding Fathers, especially focusing on Alexander Hamilton’s life – what he did and who he was. Hamilton was a man who married a woman named Eliza Schuyler and they had a son named Philip. 

Hamilton was a famous lawyer, author, and politician. Hamilton was only 47 years old when Aaron Burr, another American politician, shot him in a pistol duel over the fate of Burr’s career. Burr was running to be Governor of New York state.  

Lots of people were happy about Hamilton coming out on Disney+. It was a big deal when it came out on Disney+ because now kids can watch it and learn more about American history. 

Another big reason for the excitement is that so many people loved the music, but couldn’t afford to see it live because Broadway tickets are expensive. Many people who had wanted to see it for a long time were finally able to see it on Disney+.

Movie theaters have been closed since March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and streaming services have been competing for customers. Disney + is trying to give people different reasons to subscribe as the service is relatively new and competes with Netflix.  The pandemic has given these sites incredible opportunities to grow their subscribers.  

According to Techradar.com, “As of July 3, the musical Hamilton is available to stream, which is the [Disney+] service’s biggest new offering yet in 2020. It’s the original cast recording of the theater sensation, and it lives up to the hype.”

According to Variety.com, “From Friday through Sunday [when Hamilton was released], the Disney Plus app was downloaded 752,451 times globally, including 458,796 times in the U.S.”’ 

With more people now able to view Hamilton, some people say it is a good show, while others have concerns with it. 

Kate Genovese, a resident of New York, said, “I think it may be appropriate for older children. The music is definitely fantastic for kids of any age. The show itself does deal with some topics that younger children may not, or should not, be exposed to.” 

Vassili Frantzis, a teacher at The Math and Science Exploratory School, said, “As a teacher, I know whether it is on Disney+ or not, there are kids all over the place listening to the lyrics of Hamilton. I think most people heard all of the stuff.”

While Hamilton has enjoyed huge success, according to Oprah magazine, “Reaching a wider audience also brought a deluge of criticism amid the praise—including concerns about how the work lionized the United States’ slave-owning founding fathers and didn’t accurately portray history.”

Some people are criticizing the show because it does not emphasize that slavery was occurring during this time. As the Black Lives Matter movement spreads across the U.S., people are asking questions about whether Hamilton accurately portrays the Founding Fathers, some of whom owned slaves. 

According to CNN.com, Lin-Manuel Miranda has responded to the criticism, stating, “All the criticisms are valid. The sheer tonnage of complexities & failings of these people I couldn’t get. Or wrestled with but cut. I took 6 years and fit as much as I could in a 2.5 hour musical. Did my best. It’s all fair game.” 

If you would like to see what all the hype and criticism is about, then I recommend you try watching Hamilton on Disney+. It’s much cheaper than the Broadway tickets were, and with schools being closed right now, it’s a great way to learn about history. 

Lin Manuel Miranda ( Alexander Hamilton) and Phillipa Soo ( Eliza Schuyler) on stage