A “Hamilton” timeline, from Miranda’s “joke” idea to Broadway to now.
Alexander Hamilton is first U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, serving until 1795.
“In the Heights” opens on Broadway, a musical written by Lin-Manuel Miranda, directed by Thomas Kail, with choreography by Andy Blankenbuehler and music direction by Alex Lacamoire. It wins the Tony for best musical and makes a name for Miranda. Later the same year during a vacation, Miranda begins reading historian Ron Chernow’s biography “Alexander Hamilton” (Penguin, 2004) and has the idea the story could be a hip-hop concept album. He mentions the idea to Jeremy McCarter, who first assumes Miranda is joking, according to their co-written book “Hamilton: The Revolution” (2016, Grand Central) about the musical’s gestation.
Miranda is invited to perform “The Hamilton Mixtape” for the Obama family at the White House Evening of Poetry, Music, and the Spoken Word, accompanied by Lacamoire on piano. Standing ovation. The song is adapted into the opening number of the musical.
An early draft of the musical, still titled “The Hamilton Mixtape,” is workshopped at the Vassar Reading Festival in Poughkeepsie, New York.
“Hamilton’s” off-Broadway debut at the Public Theater, with much the same creative team as “In the Heights,” including Lacamoire, direction by Kail and choreography by Blankenbuehler. Set design is by David Korins.
Opening night on Broadway at the Richard Rodgers Theatre, starring Miranda as Alexander, produced by Jeffrey Seller. “Hamilton” would win 11 Tony Awards, including best musical.
The first post-Broadway production opens in Chicago at the thenPrivate Bank Theatre (now CIBC Theatre) on Monroe Street, with Miguel Cervantes as Alexander. It is still running, with Cervantes still in the lead. In November, vice president-elect Mike Pence attends a Broadway performance and is addressed by the cast during the curtain call.
First national tour launches in San Francisco in March. “Hamilton” opens in London’s West End in December. The acclaimed Joshua Henry leaves the role of Aaron Burr in the Chicago production in January, briefly replaced by Wayne Brady.
“Hamilton: The Exhibition” is announced for Chicago’s Northerly Island in an editorial board meeting at the Chicago Tribune, attended by Miranda, Seller and designer Korins, who will head up the project. The plan is for the history exhibit about Hamilton and the Founding Fathers to stay in Chicago for an unspecified run, then be transported to other cities. The opening is originally planned for November, then postponed to spring 2019, and postponed once more to April 27. A second national tour launches in Seattle and over the holidays, “Hamilton’s” Broadway production grosses more than $4 million in a single week, a new box office record.
In January, “Hamilton” plays a celebrated three-week run in Puerto Rico, at the Centro de Bellas Artes in San Juan, with Miranda briefly returning to his lead role as Alexander. The Puerto Rico production becomes a third U.S. tour. Construction continues for “Hamilton: The Exhibition” in Chicago, as well as in a scene shop in Atlanta.
A 2008 picture shows Lin-Manuel Miranda, center, and members of the cast in a scene from the musical “In the Heights” at Broadway’s Richard Rodgers Theatre.
From left, Leslie Odom Jr., Phillipa Soo, Lin-Manuel Miranda and Christopher Jackson are shown on stage at the 2015 offBroadway debut of “Hamilton.”