Hamilton: The big day!
Today was the big day! 164 students and 20 chaperones went to the Orpheum to attend Hamilton.
We spent the morning rounding up students and headed for the Orpheum. Students participated in a special #EduHam program featuring the Sons of Liberty (Laurens, Mulligan and Lafayette) as our MCs. When we arrived, we were given assigned seating within the Orpheum. Now, imagine our surprise as we were seated in the Orchestra section THREE ROWS BACK. Students (and teachers) were freaking out. Two Harding students, JR Danielson and Emiliano Huerta, were among those selected to perform. It was incredible to see the creativity and passion of all the student performers, and to hear the reactions from all of their classmates.
The performance itself was electric. I'd seen the show in NYC, and earlier that month and the energy in the room and the energy in the cast was unlike anything I'd seen. It was really moving to see my students laugh, cry and cheer throughout the show. As an avid theater goer (and performer) I am good at keeping my emotions locked in. While I cry through every musical I see (much to my partner's dismay), I'm a good audience member and keep my sheer joy, laughter, tears, etc mostly to myself. These students did NOT. Kids were literally just screaming during "Say No To This". One student seated next to me kept tapping my arm to say "Romero, I have goosebumps", and "Romero, the harmonies are so good".
What a day!!! This was worth every minute of anxiety and stress.
It was especially fun to chat with students after the concert. Harding is lucky to have a partnership with the Guthrie Theater, so many of the students involved have seen a live theater performance. That being said, this was the first musical almost all of them had been too.
Best student comments to the question "So? What did you think?!"
"I just.. I.. (and in a squeaky voice)... yeah"
"Romero, I cried. I cried because it was so good."
"THE HARMONIES. CAN WE SING THIS?"
"I don't usually cry and stuff, but I teared up"
and (my favorite) one week later...
A student walks into my office
"Romero, I miss Hamilton."
Me too, Phillip. Me too.