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02 // 03 // 19

Hamilton: How the Musical Remixes American History

February 3, 2019 @ 1:30pm to February 3, 2019 @ 3:00pm

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Orlando has Hamilton-mania!

Everyone’s talking about Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Tony-winning musical and many of us have the triple-platinum cast album playing on repeat. Its crafty lyrics, hip-hop tunes, and big, bold story have even rejuvenated interest in the real lives and true histories that Hamilton: the Musical puts center stage.

In this talk, which is aimed at people who’ve seen the show or know the soundtrack, historian Dr. Richard Bell examines this musical phenomenon — being staged at the Dr. Phillips Performing Center for the Performing Arts January 22 - February 10 — to reveal what its success tells us about the marriage of history and show business. Learn what this amazing musical got right and got wrong about Alexander Hamilton, the American Revolution, and the birth of the United States, and why it all matters. Examine some of the choices Hamilton’s creators made to simplify, dramatize, and humanize the complicated events and stories on which the show is based.

Explore Hamilton’s cultural impact and what its runaway success reveals about the stories we tell each other about who we are and about the nation we made. The program includes various illustrative video clips. Program recommended for ages 14 and up due to adult themes and strong language.


$18 person


Tickets must be purchased in advance


Richard Bell (Ph.D. Harvard) is an Associate Professor of History at the University of Maryland. His research interests focus on American history between 1750 and 1877. His published work includes We Shall Be No More: Suicide and Self-Government in the Newly United States (2012), and Buried Lives: Incarcerated in Early America (2012). Prof. Bell is also the author of several journal articles, most recently in the Journal of the Early Republic, Early American Literature, Slavery and Abolition, and History Compass. Prof. Bell has held research fellowships at more than a dozen libraries and institutes, including the Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Abolition and Resistance at Yale University. He is also a frequent lecturer and debater on the C-Span television network. He is the recipient of more than a dozen teaching awards.