MILWAUKEE — It’s the show that makes even the youngest of audiences want to sing along: “Hamilton” is touring through Wisconsin — the first Broadway show to come back to the state since the onset of the pandemic.
“Throughout history, whatever the crisis, Broadway theaters have always remained open,” Lauren Reid said.
Reid is the president of the John Gore Organization, which is the parent company to Broadway Across America. She said this is the longest period of time that Broadway’s lights have been dimmed.
Even after the tragedies on Sept. 11, 2001, shows were back up and running after just a few days.
“We’ve been working for a year and a half to bring these shows back to audiences […] in a safe way as quickly as we could,” Reid said.
But the re-opening of Broadway goes beyond entertainment. Reid cited that Broadway brings in about $18.5 billion to the U.S. economy.
While she is one of the thousands of people employed by the “economic engine,” Reid is no stranger to sitting in the audience. In fact, she flew to Dallas, Texas to see one of the very first Broadway shows that hit the road earlier this fall — “Wicked.” That’s when she knew the challenging puzzle of implementing safety protocols and matching up tours with venue availability was well worth it.
“Sitting in that theater for the very first time and hearing the orchestra play and the curtains go up and the audience cheer— it makes my heart full,” she said.
And that’s what Wisconsinites can now experience once again at the Marcus Center with “Hamilton.” The musical, by Lin-Manuel Miranda, tells the story of founding father Alexander Hamilton through hip-hop, R&B, jazz and Broadway music.
Everyone who comes to the Marcus Center will be required to mask up, and provide either a negative COVID-19 test or proof of vaccine. Security is now contactless. Shows will perform to full theaters.
Kendra Ingram, the president and CEO at the Marcus Center, and Donald Driver, the cultural ambassador at the Marcus Center, said they are hoping to fill those seats with more people who reflect Milwaukee’s diverse community.
“[Having ‘Hamilton’ come to Milwaukee] is legendary,” Driver said. “This show brings out the unique atmosphere of the culture, of the history, of our United States of America.”
Both Driver and Ingram have seen “Hamilton,” multiple times.
“This is a show that you can literally see five, six, ten times,” Ingram said.
“Every time I’ve come back, I’ve learned something and saw something different that I’ve missed.
Whether you’re joining the Marcus Center team and seeing the show for the fourth time or you’re a first-time “Hamilton”-goer, Ingram is hoping everyone savors this moment in history, because, as the last year and a half has shown us, the world can turn upsidedown in a moment’s notice.
“Hamilton” has won Tony, Grammy, Olivier, Pultizer Prize and Kennedy Center Honors awards.
“Hamilton” opened at Marcus Performing Arts Center on Oct. 13, and runs through Oct. 24. The musical will also make a return to Wisconsin at the Overture Center from Aug. 9 – 22 in 2022. More information on the Milwaukee show can be found here, and more information on the Madison show can be found here.
(this story/news/article has not been edited by PostX News staff and is published from a syndicated feed)