Indianapolis started the career of Leslie Odom Jr .. Well, something like that. The actor who won a Tony for Hamilton, did his first solo show at Cabaret in 2013 – two years before his role as Aaron Burr sent him into the stratosphere. He’ll be back in town at the Hilbert Circle Theater next month.
You can spot a Hoosier in the Hamilton National Tour. Alum Julian Ramos of Indiana University and Lutheran High School in Indianapolis is a “swing” in the Tour Broadway production that ends December 10-29 at the Old National Center. That means he plays a number of different roles – six, to be precise, cowardly General Charles Lee to James Reynolds, husband of Hamilton’s lover (Ramos’ favorite part).
A 25 year old south sider sang with Lin-Manuel Miranda. Jordan Donica, a Roncalli High School graduate who cut his teeth on shows like Rent and The King and me on Footlite Musicals in the Herron-Morton neighborhood, played Thomas Jefferson and the Marquis de Lafayette on the inaugural Hamilton National Tour in 2017. The budding Broadway star shared a stage with Miranda creator Miranda at a Camelot concert at New York’s Lincoln Center Theater in March.
A Schuyler sister got her equity card in… Warsaw, Indiana. Karen Olivo, who played Angelica Schuyler in the first Chicago production of Hamilton, received her Actors’ equity card after a summer stick show at the Wagon Wheel Center for the Arts in 1995 and was granted the right to play on Broadway.
A 2007 Notre Dame graduate held the fort down on its first national tour. As deputy director, Patrick Vassel trained new cast members, offered the actors notes and stood up show after show to ensure the quality of production.
The Hoosier composer Cole Porter got into the clutch. Miranda tweeted about drinking from Porter’s goblet while visiting Yale University in 2011 – a full four years before Hamilton’s success. You could say that he soaked up the creativity of the composer “Anything Goes” in a cup.
Could one IU guy’s skateboarding skills have inspired the next Hamilton? Miranda and his son attended a Broadway production of SpongeBob SquarePants in 2017 in which former IU student and Salem, Indiana native Kyle Matthew Hamilton demolished trick after trick. Hamilton remembered NYSkateboarding.com that Miranda tracked him down after the show and exclaimed, “Skateboard guy! You were fantastic! “The Hoosier presented Miranda’s son with a set of miniature bikes.” Hopefully his son will grow up with a love for skating, follow in his father’s footsteps and develop his own skateboarding musical, “he said.” That would be so sick! “
A hoosier stopped the show. But not in the way a star is born. When the newly elected Vice President Mike Pence was there in 2016, the passion rose during the performance, with standing ovations for the line “Immigrants – We Do the Job” and wild applause for a few vicious verses from King George: “When people say they hate you ”and“ Do you know how hard it is to lead? “After the performance, Brandon Victor Dixon, the actor who played Burr that night, rushed back on stage to read a statement on behalf of the show, and expressed hope that the show had inspired Pence to” a diverse America ”to work.
Shots Fired! Pence didn’t respond, but it wasn’t surprising that President Trump had a few words on Twitter the next day on the matter and asked for an apology. They say he’s still waiting.