By Evan Needell Larry King Now
“I am not going to throw away my shot.” One could argue that mantra is the core idea that drives the titular character in Lin-Manuel Miranda’s groundbreaking musical, Hamilton.
While Alexander Hamilton feverishly obsesses over capitalizing on what he perceives to be his lone shot for success in colonial America, Miranda and his cast and crew have the luxury of multiple shots – at the 70th Annual Tony Awards, that is.
Hamilton will have record breaking sixteen shots, to be precise. This edges out former record holders, The Producers and Billy Elliot, each which received fifteen nominations.
At the Tony Awards, Lin-Manuel Miranda’s masterpiece – a heavily hip-hop influenced retelling of the life of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton, in which each of the key American Revolutionaries is portrayed by a minority performer – will strive to beat the record of twelve wins, currently held by The Producers.
Included among Hamilton’s nominations are best musical, score, book, direction, choreography and a whopping seven performance nominations – including a nomination for best performance by an actor in a leading role in a musical for Miranda, who not only wrote the cultural phenomenon, but also plays Alexander Hamilton himself.
Going head to head against Miranda is Leslie Odom Jr., who was nominated in the same category for his portrayal of narrator and antagonist Aaron Burr.
Other performance nominations are Phillipa Soo (Eliza Schuyler) for best performance by an actress in a leading role in a musical, Renée Elise Goldsberry (Angelica Schuyler) for best performance by an actress in a featured role in a musical, and Daveed Diggs (Marquis de Lafayette/Thomas Jefferson), Jonathan Groff (King George), and Christopher Jackson (George Washington), each for best performance by an actor in a featured role in a musical.
The cultural impact of Hamilton has been nothing short of astounding.
Hamilton enjoyed a spot on the top of the Billboard charts. It's also a trailblazer in the push for more minority participation in the theater community. The cast performed for President Barack Obama at the Whitehouse. The musical has helped to to revitalize interest in history among students nationwide. Its popularity was a major factor in the decision to keep Alexander Hamilton on the ten-dollar bill.
Beyond Hamilton’s sixteen nominations, and whether or not it receives a record-breaking haul at this year’s Tony Awards, it's clear that Hamilton’s cultural impact will last even longer than its ticket waiting list.
Much, much longer.
Hungry for more Broadway-related content? Check out this playlist of interviews Larry King has held with various stars, directors, and producers on the world’s biggest stage! Also make sure to watch the featured video above, where Larry talks to legendary music producer and Epic Records chairman LA Reid about how Hamilton is the first of its kind and will pave the way for a new kind of storytelling on Broadway.
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