8-52 – Lin-Manuel Miranda

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​Lin-Manuel Miranda can be found all over online. He is currently (at least physically will be back after the tonight’s Oscars) in London working on the Mary Poppins sequel. He has a lively, vocal, opinionated, kind, social media presence. His official website is http://www.linmanuel.com and has all of his current projects and official means to follow him. Other ways of seeing and hearing him are: FacebookTwitter, and YouTube.

He spends a lot of time, along with his projects, talking often about his family, but he guards his son’s privacy. Please remember not to post pictures of his son if you see them out in public.

I had never heard of Lin-Manuel Miranda before a couple of years ago, and now I can’t remember a time before him. He was born in New York City to Puerto Rican immigrants in 1980 on January 16th. He was married in 2010 to scientist and lawyer, Vanessa Nadal and their son was born in 2014. They also have a dog named Tobillo. Lin was an English teacher at his former high school, writer for the Manhattan Times, and composed music for commercials as well as a political jingle or two. Most recently, in addition to Broadway hits, In The Heights and then, he wrote the music for the new cantina scene in Star Wars: The Force Awakens and the soundtrack for Moana.

I discovered Hamilton through Tumblr. All the good things come from Tumblr. People were talking about it and when I heard  Alexander Hamilton and rap, I ignored it. I did not want to get pulled into this. It was definitely not my thing.

The first video I happened to see was Yorktown and I was completely enthralled. I saved it and rewatched it again and again. I couldn’t look away. I didn’t follow posts, but I read everyone that crossed my dash.

When the soundtrack was released, I was able to listen to it on my Kindle Fire through my Prime membership.

I watched Lin’s original performance at the White House, 

and his wedding present to Vanessa, 

and I was in like Flynn.

I began to breathe Hamilton. I heard the lyrics everywhere. I’d tell my kids to take a break and before I knew it I had Angelica and Eliza finishing the verse in my head. In the car while they were nose deep in electronics or books, I’d say look around, and the rest would play in my head.

I started watching interviews with the cast.

I watched the cast’s visit to the White House to meet with students and the President and First Lady. One of my favorite moments:

As a writer, Non-Stop‘s lyrics grabbed me and wouldn’t let go. Of course that combined with The Mix Tape’s Wrote My Way Out were added to the soundtrack of my own writing life.
I stretched.

I reached out.

Without knowing it, Lin was there with a good morning tweet, encouraging the forward motion and then ending the day with a good night, today is over, tomorrow is a ew day, a new chance, a clean slate. 

Inspiring.

Inspirational.

Energizing.

Encouraging.

I read Ron Chernow’s biography of Hamilton and I could see, no, hear the old formal writing’s cadence that translated so well to rap and spoken word. I was shocked at how well it worked, at how genuine and organic it was and I reached further.

It wasn’t if he could I could, but it was an extension of the muse; the don’t follow, lead; the you can. Yes, you can.

Thank you, Lin for opening my eyes and my ears, showing me that the impossible is more aptly I’m Possible and I can.

I can. I can. I can.

I will.

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