Lin Manuel Miranda, Hamilton, Terry Gross discussed on Fresh Air

Fresh Air


Command expecting expecting expecting support for fresh air and the following message come from green from Amex ready to try something new whether it's grabbing Sushi Burritos reto on the go or spending a weekend. Snowboarding and Breckenridge Green from Amex can help you keep things fresh with three times points on restaurants and travel including airfare and hotel stays. It's built around your lifestyle so you can keep doing you with an extra boost of confidence. Learn more at American Express Dot com slash rush green from AMEX terms apply. This is fresh air. I'm David in Cooley. In for Terry Gross back with more of Terry's 2017 interview with Lin Manuel Miranda creator of Hamilton the Broadway hip-hop musical about the founding fathers one eleven Tony's and the Pulitzer Prize for drama. This interview is one of our staff picks fix for interview of the decade. So I have to ask you about Stephen Sondheim because you have a very interesting history with him first of all when you directing west side story in high school. He came to your class because he he was the friend of the father of one of the students in the cast and so John Wiedeman For assassins and Pacific overtures overtures. Yeah okay so there's that so you get to meet him in high school and then and you get to write the Spanish lyrics for the Spanish production of West side story and then you got to be in a production. In of Merrily we roll along which is great sun high musical that always needs to be revived because the original Broadway run was very short and so this was a a city center. New York City recenter encores production. In fact I want to play just a little bit of you in that. which was gracious enough to? I saw you in this in this reduction production so you're playing lyricist who works with a composer but the composer has kind of like sold out and you know he's just doing like commercial work and the lyricist lyricist now has come to think of the composer instead of just being. His friend and collaborator Franklin Shepard. He thinks of him now is like Franklin Shepard Inc because he's so much about like deals and making money in this scene like you're getting interviewed on TV. You're Kinda pretty bitter about the whole collaboration Asian with composer. Now do you to work together not please how do we work together. Sure and he goes and I go and soon. We're humming along. ooh That's called writing song. Then he goes and I go and the phone goes and he does mater mater yesterday. Romano Jerome undermine drove butter butter butter butter. Do It's Rome. Click Sorry Charlie early so I go and he goes and I go and and soon. We're tapping away. Sorry Charlie Secretary on the Intercom guest. Smith's thanks miss. Tell them to wait. We ordered where did the car we call it in the bank. We of course will get done. Sorry Charlie modern motorcycle. The stock motorbike. Mother won't hold. Yes yes Mississippi. Thanks sweet tell him to wait. We wire the car we ordered the coast. We send up the bank and the telephones blink stocks get sold. The rest of bustle keeps Arnhold. And he's into making movies. He's corporation night. So I play with my wife and kids and I wait to hear them movie bids Meditation in writing. He flies off to California. I discuss him with my shrink. That's the story the way we me and Franklin Shepard Pink I like this okay. That's my guest Lin Manuel Miranda. You're so much fun on that and I really think doing hip hop rhymes is great preparation for that lyric. Absolutely yeah and and Sondheim has written. So many. He's just like the most brilliant lyricist but What are some of the things you feel? You learned either from talking with Sondheim because I know he also give you feedback on Hamilton before you actually put it on stage. So what are things you've learned from actually talking to him just from like getting intimately intimately acquainted with his work. The thing he always sort of stressed was variety variety variety variety variety. When you're dealing with a constant rhythm no matter how great your lyrics are if you don't switch it up? People's heads are going to start bobbing in their stop. Listening to what you're saying so consistently thinly keep the year fresh and keep the audience surprised And you know that was his watchword throughout the writing of Hamilton. This time Song Long. That's closest to comic. Rap is in my opinion not getting married which is done everybody here because if everybody would like to thank you for coming to for the wedding you do mark do more? I'd appreciate your going even more. I mean you must have lots of better things to do. Another word of its Paul. Remember Paul you know the men get America. But I'm not because they've never ruined anyone as wonderful as he is. Thank you all offer gifts and the flowers. Thank you all for showers. Don't tell Paul but I'm not getting married today. Anyone who could do that song has an incredible tongue absolutely so so tricky. It's so fast in the words are so just kind of like dense unfunny and rhyming and So have you thought about that Song Lot in terms of of intricate rhyme schemes. And what human is capable of without totally cooking up. Honestly I think about that song more when people ask me. How did you think rap? WHO's GonNa work on Broadway? Nothing in my so is faster than getting married today company. So I don't know what you're talking about. There's so much precedent for the work in both quote unquote hip hop and not in terms of pattern for the stage. But what's what's amazing about. Getting married today is also in a master class in making lyric easy. There are continents on which you waste air. H There's no h is in that Because if you say her you've lost half off the air in your lungs so it's very Teasing peas thank. You always everybody here. Because if everybody's here I'd like to thank you all for coming to the wedding It's more about breath control than then being a it's not a tongue twister. It's very consciously Nana tongue twister. It's about being able to say it in one continuous breath and getting out of the way and in and choosing words that do not require any extra air or any extra tongue or a jaw work So it's actually not about trying into making it hard. It's about making it easy. So did you learn that intuitively or did sign him. Tell you that that was his intention to stay away from his many ages as possible and to to keep two things that could easily be said. I think I read about that. In a conversation he had at some point But I also knew that intuitively would've leave because of the hip hop artists liked who wrapped fast. You know they're not trying to make something that's hard for them to perform. They're trying to make something. That sounds impressive. Give joy to deliver trying to think of like a really specific early ninety s example Queen Latifah. It's not just that so you broke. It looks more like a fracture. Cats that rap but Latifah where we to crush that's Queen Latifah nineteen ninety two. And it's it's fast there's Queen Latifah's unit is us. There's plenty of people out there triggers ready to pull it. Why are you trying to jump in front of the bullet? Young Lady No Ages. So you learn intuitively that like the writer is trying to make something that flows easily off the tongue. So did the writer of Alexander Hamilton tried to avoid ages. You will observe served. Hamilton is not in any of the fast rapping that happens on stage right. It's George. Washington Goes Hamilton. Jefferson is the one that goes so he knows the doing trying French ingenuity influence in France. I mean so. We're not hampering anyone with Hamilton Lin. Manuel Miranda it's just been wonderful to talk with you. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Thank you so very much. Likewise the joys mind Lin Manuel. Miranda is the Creator and original star of the hit musical Hamilton Terry Gross interviewed him in two thousand seventeen. Next up we'll hear from the writers of the book of Mormon another hit musical of the decade as our staff picks a favourite interviews from the decade decade continues this fresh air support for NPR and the following message. Come from Netflix. This new series. Messiah what would it take to make you believe Stephen something crazy when a man starts performing miracles and saying he's the Messiah One. CIA agent is determined to find the truth. No matter how crazy it may be messiah streaming now only Netflix six. When you travel to a new place sometimes it doesn't just change where you are? It changes who you are next on. NPR's code switch a story about travel and transformation. Listen and subscribe continuing annual with our staff picks. A favourite interviews of the decade is a conversation from twenty eleven with Trey Parker and Matt Stone The creators of TV South Park and the CO creators with Robert Lopez of Avenue. Q of the hit musical the book of Mormon which one nine Tony Awards including best musical. If you know anything about South Park you would expect that a musical written by Parker and stone would be irreverent. And you'd be right but it's also got heart. The story is about two young a young Mormons who are sent on their first mission to Uganda where they learn. Africa is not like the Lion King. Let's start with the opening song set at a mission training center center in Salt Lake City. Where Young Mormons are learning door to door missionary technique? 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