Moana’s melody maker

> Lin-Manuel Mi­randa is the man be­hind the mu­sic for the new land­mark Dis­ney an­i­mated film

The Sun (Malaysia) - - ENTERTAINMENT - PIYA SINHA-ROY Hamil­ton? MaryPop­pins StarWars TheForceAwak­ens, Moana Lit­tle Mer­maid.

AWARD-WIN­NING Hamil­ton mu­si­cal cre­ator Lin-Manuel Mi­randa has swaped the pol­i­tics of 18th cen­tury Wash­ing­ton for the charms of Poly­ne­sia in the Dis­ney an­i­mated movie Moana.

The film fea­tures Auli’i Cravalho as Moana, and Dwayne John­son as the demigod Maui.

Mi­randa, 36, worked with mu­si­cians from the South Pa­cific to cre­ate orig­i­nal songs for the movie, which re­volves around a plucky teenage girl who sets sail on an epic jour­ney to help save her tribe.

He spoke with Reuters about Moana, and his work on the up­com­ing Mary Pop­pins movie se­quel, where he will play a char­ac­ter named Jack.

What was it like work­ing with Samoan­born mu­si­cian Opetaia Foa’i and his band, Te Vaka? “We all went into this keenly aware that this is a part of the world that isn’t rep­re­sented on screen very much, so you want the peo­ple who live there to see the movie and say: ‘Hey, that’s us’, and with pride.

“Opetaia took the lead on the rhythms and har­monies ... he leads the dance and I write lyrics and the melodies.”

Which was your favourite song? “The one that rep­re­sents our col­lab­o­ra­tion the best is We Know the Way. We started writ­ing that the week­end we met.

“We met in New Zealand (and) we went to this Paci­fica mu­sic fes­ti­val where we heard choirs from all over the dif­fer­ent is­lands.”

How has life been post– “I love the sub­way in New York. I think it’s a na­tional trea­sure. I did a lot of writ­ing on the train.

“For a while, I couldn’t take the train with­out some­one sit­ting next to me and talk­ing to me.

“(Now) I’m work­ing on a movie in Lon­don. I can walk around with my son (and) it’s not a big deal, so it’s nice to have that back.”

Speak­ing of Lon­don, what can you tell us about your char­ac­ter Jack? Will we be hear­ing a Cock­ney ac­cent? “You’re go­ing to hear the worst ac­cent you’ve ever heard in your life! You’re not go­ing to know what coun­try I’m from. “It’s go­ing to sound like I came from another planet!”

You’ve worked on mu­sic for and you’re in­volved in Dis­ney’s princess world with and Any Mar­vel comic char­ac­ters? “I’m a Mar­vel buff. I grew up read­ing those comic books. If they ever do a Max­i­mum Car­nage sto­ry­line, I want dibs on Car­nage.” – Reuters

Mi­randa (be­low) com­posed the songs for Moana (left); and (right) per­form­ing a num­ber with John­son who voiced the demigod Maui at the film’s pre­miere.

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