Entertainment

He Created One Of The Most Talked About Musicals In Recent Memory And He’s Just Getting Started

Everybody knows who Lin-Manuel Miranda is at this point. Miranda is a straight-up Broadway musical nerd genius that has modernized both the stage and, well, American history in a revolutionary way: with rap. His play is one of the most talked about plays in recent memory and it is

Miranda is the brains and talent behind Hamilton, and learning where he comes from and what he’s up to these days will make you love him even more.

He was named from the title of a poem.

CREDIT: @Linmirandacom / Twitter

He was born to be a writer. His parents were avid fans of Puerto Rican poet José Manuel Torres Santiago and his poem about the Vietnam War, Nana Roja Para Mi Hijo Lin Manuel.

He grew up in Manhattan but spent his summers in Puerto Rico.

CREDIT: PBS

His father, Luis Miranda, was a community activist and political consultant and his mother, Dr. Luz Towns-Miranda was a psychologist. Like every good Puerto Rican parent, they would send him to spend time with his abuela y primos on the island every summer.

As a kid, he’d help his dad write jingles for political campaigns, including Eliot Spitzer’s 2006 gubernatorial campaign.

CREDIT: @Lin_Manuel / Twitter

Even when Miranda was in Hunter College’s elementary school, he was acting in student productions. He eventually went on to major in theater studies at Wesleyan University, where he co-founded a hip-hop comedy troupe called “Freestyle Love Supreme,” which is going strong to this day.

His wedding video went viral before Miranda did.

CREDIT: usnavi / YouTube

Of course, Miranda organized the bridal party to surprise his wife Vanessa Nadal “To Life” from “Fiddler on the Roof.” The video garnered over 6 million views, and he married the love of his life, who he happened to have a mad crush on in high school.

Pre-Hamilton and post-Tony award, he guest starred in a few TV shows, including Modern Family.

CREDIT: “MODERN FAMILY (ABC) Good Cop Bad Dog.” Digital Image. TV Equals. 11 December 2018.

In Season 2, Episode 22, Miranda plays a terrible dog trainer for Jay and Gloria’s beloved dog, Stella. He’s also played a recurring role in NBC’s Do No Harm, appeared in How I Met Your Mother and more.

The story goes that Miranda was inspired to write Hamilton after reading Ron Chernow’s 800-page biography of the late president.

CREDIT: @charrison1519 / Twitter

Miranda was on vacation in Mexico in 2008 when he decided to do a little ‘light reading’, according to his website. He became so enamored with the revolutionary and interested in the parallels between America’s first year in existence and America today that he just went to work.

It took him six years to write the play, a true masterpiece.

CREDIT: @playbill / Twitter

He spent one whole year just writing the song “My Shot”, want to make sure it perfectly captured the historical figure’s intellect. He even enlisted the help of Ron Chernow to fact-check all his lyrics.

He was awarded the Kennedy Center Honor for his work on Hamilton.

CREDIT: @HamiltonMusical / Twitter

The Kennedy Center Chairman David M. Rubenstein said in a statement that, “the creators of Hamilton have literally and figuratively changed the face of American culture with daringly original, breathtakingly relevant work.”

His last performance tickets sold for $10k per seat.

CREDIT: @musicaltheatree / Twitter

He vowed that he would return to the stage again after his last July 9, 2016 performance. Since then, a documentary about the creation of his show has been released, Hamilton’s America. That’s right. A whole documentary and book are dedicated to the process of creating Hamilton.

Today, he’s one Oscar win away from becoming a rare PEGOT.

CREDIT: @Disney / Twitter

Sounds like I said peacock, but a PEGOT is someone who has won a Pulitzer, Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony award. He’s won one Pulitzer, three Tonys, three Grammys, an Emmy, two Olivier Awards and the recipient of a “Genius Grant” from the MacArthur Fellows Program.

On November 30, 2018, he got his very own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

People are now naming their babies “Hamilton.”

CREDIT: @kdmayala / Twitter

There was a 60 percent increase in the last year alone for babies being named Hamilton, according to BabyCenter.com. Oh, and que cute that he pens Spanglish ‘cheer up’ letters to niñas that cry to their tías about how much they want to see the performance.

Miranda just released a book of pep poems.

CREDIT: @yoitsalyj / Twitter

It all started when he started posting g’morning and g’night tweets for his fans (literally before Hamilton was even out). Here’s an excerpt:

“Good night now, and rest.

Today was a test.

You passed it, you’re past it.

Now breathe till unstressed.”

The book is already a New York Times Bestseller!

Behind the scenes, Miranda was busy co-writing the songs to Disney’s Moana soundtrack.

CREDIT: @THR / Twitter

For a single song, “How Far I’ll Go”, Miranda earned a Golden Globe, Critics’ Choice, Oscar an Grammy Award nomination. He’s also contributed to Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) songwriting.

Miranda also helped composed Bring It On: The Musical.

CREDIT: @playbill / Twitter

It was nominated for a Tony Best Musical just four years before Miranda’s own musical would break all Tony records by being nominated for 16 Tony Awards, 11 of which it won, including Best Musical. 

He’s starring in Disney’s sequel to Julie Andrews’ Mary Poppins.

CREDIT: @Lin_Manuel / Twitter

Mary Poppins Returns will be his first major role since leaving the Broadway cast. In it, he plays Jack, a former mentee of Bert, the chimney sweeper originally played by Dick Van Dyke.

You can find him on the big screen on December 19, 2018!

Miranda named his son, Sebastian, after the singing crab in Disney’s The Little Mermaid.

CREDIT: @EW / Twitter

Oh, and he’s co-writing the entire live-action reboot of Disney’s classic tale and even co-producing the film with Marc Platt. That’s all we know for now.

Miranda and Obama bromanced hard back in the day.

CREDIT: Untitled. Screenshot. NBC New York. 11 December 2018.

Miranda performed a slice of Hamilton at the White House Evening of Poetry, Music and the Spoken Word and was immediately invited back. This time, to do a freestyling battle with POTUS in the Rose Garden. What the…..

Aunque, Miranda continues to condem Trump for his presidency.

CREDIT: PBS

In an interview with PBS, Miranda said that he is “very good with words, but these were the only words I had left.” In the days of eerie silence from Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria hit, Miranda was worried about his family.

He’s begrudgingly stepped into the activist seat for Puerto Rico.

CREDIT: PBS

In the same interview with PBS, he started by saying, “I am so uncomfortable to be here right now. I would so much rather be writing a new musical.” But someone has to do something for Puerto Rico and Miranda has a platform that his father must be so proud he’s earned.

Miranda wrote and organized 22 Latinx artists to create the song “Almost Like Praying”, which raised $22 million for PR.

CREDIT: PBS

Names like Marc Anthony, Camila Cabello, Jennifer Lopez, Luis Fonsi, Gloria Estefan, and so, so many more joined in on this track, which was inspired by West Side Story. The song “Maria” includes a line, “say it [Maria] soft, and it’s almost like praying.” This takes on a whole new meaning when we think about how Hurricane Maria has obliterated the island.

Once again, Miranda’s genius goes to good work for the Hispanic Federation’s UNIDOS Disaster Relief and Recovery Program.

Oh, and he convinced the U.S. Treasury to cancel its plans to replace Hamilton on the $10 bill.

CREDIT: @THR / Twitter

Never forget that time that the cast of Hamilton addressed Mike Pence in the audience directly, telling him:

“We, sir — we are the diverse America who are alarmed and anxious that your new administration will not protect us, our planet, our children, our parents, or defend us and uphold our inalienable rights. We truly hope that this show has inspired you to uphold our American values and to work on behalf of all of us.”


READ: If You’ve Been Following Lin-Manuel Miranda On Twitter, It Should Be No Surprise That He Has A Book Deal

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Radical Feminists Have Seized Control of a Federal Building in Mexico in Protest of the Government’s Apathy Towards Rampant Femicide

Entertainment

Radical Feminists Have Seized Control of a Federal Building in Mexico in Protest of the Government’s Apathy Towards Rampant Femicide

Last week, Mexican feminist activists took over the National Human Rights Commissions federal building in a move to bring greater awareness to the scourge of gender-based violence and femicide that has racked Mexico for decades.

According to the federal Interior Secretariat, the statistics in Mexico have recently taken a turn for the worse.

Domestic violence against women has became an even more acute problem since the pandemic has forced women to stay insider with their abusers. Emergency distress calls reporting domestic violence have risen by 50%.

The occupation of the Human Rights building is just another chapter in the saga of the “Ni Una Menos” (Not One More Woman) movement, an anti-femicide collective born in Argentina that has steadily been gaining steam in Mexico since 2019.

In recent years, anti-femicide demonstrations have been sparked by various heinous crimes against women or girls that have been largely overlooked by law enforcement officials. 

Photo by Marcos Brindicci/Getty Images

Unfortunately, the government of Mexico has appeared to be apathetic to the wave of femicide that is overwhelming the women of their country.

Recently, when President Andrés Manuel López Obrador was asked to address Mexico’s gender violence epidemic, he demurred, stating that he didn’t “want femicide to detract” from the raffle his administration was holding for the sale of the presidential airplane.

As for the feminist activists at the heart of Ni Una Menos and the federal building occupation, the government’s failure to respond to anti-woman violence is the primary fuel for their anger. 

“We’re here so that the whole world will know that in Mexico they kill women and nobody does anything about it,” said Yesenia Zamudio to the LA Times. According to Zamudio, she is still seeking justice for the murder of her 19-year-old daughter four years ago.

The women of Mexico appear to be fed up, grasping at any and all tactics that have the potential to incite change on a grander scale.

Their tactics may seem dramatic to some, but it’s undeniable that they are no longer being ignored. As of now, the radical activists are pulling attention-grabbing stunts like decorating a portrait of Mexican Revolution leader Francisco Madero with lipstick and purple hair.

They’re also making headlines for vandalizing the federal building’s walls and splashing paint on the doors of the presidential palace.

One thing is for sure: something has to change. Otherwise, thousands of innocent women and girls will continue to be raped, abused, and murdered while their perpetrators escape with immunity. 

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Joe Biden Speaks Alongside ‘Fearless Fighter’ Kamala Harris In First Appearance And Recalls Her Family’s Immigrant Story

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Joe Biden Speaks Alongside ‘Fearless Fighter’ Kamala Harris In First Appearance And Recalls Her Family’s Immigrant Story

Chip Somodevilla / Gettycc

After weeks of speculation and anticipation, presidential candidate Joe Biden announced on Tuesday that he has officially picked his running mate.

In a history-making announcement, Biden revealed that he had tapped California Sen. Kamala Harris to be his VP Pick.

“I have the great honor to announce that I’ve picked @KamalaHarris — a fearless fighter for the little guy, and one of the country’s finest public servants — as my running mate,” Biden announced in a tweet.

On Wednesday, Biden held his first campaign event alongside running mate Kamala Harris in Delaware.

During their speeches, the two candidates wore masks and kept their distance in keeping with COVID-19 standards.

Speaking about his VP pick, Biden described Harris as coming from an “America’s story.” Biden described Harris as “a child of immigrants” who “knows personally how immigrant families enrich our country as well as the challenges of what it means to grow up Black and Indian-American in the United States of America,” he explained. “And this morning, all across the nation, little girls woke up, especially little Black and brown girls that feel overlooked and undervalued in their communities, but today — today just maybe they’re seeing themselves for the first time in a new way as president and vice presidents.”

In a speech of her own, Harris emphasized the importance of family and urged citizens to vote.  “We need a mandate that proves that the past few years do not represent who we are or who we aspire to be,” she said. “Joe likes to say that character is on the ballot. And it’s true,” she explained. “I’ve had a lot of titles over my career and certainly vice president will be great. But ‘Momala’ will always be the one that means the most.”

Harris’s nomination makes her the first Black and first Indian-American woman on either major party’s presidential ticket.

Harris is a former prosecutor from California who challenged Biden in her own presidential bid last year. Her nomination makes her the fourth woman to appear on a major presidential ballot. Before her, Geraldine Ferraro ran as a Democratic vice presidential nominee in 1984. In 2008, Republican Sarah Palin ran as a vice presidential nominee, later in 2016, Hillary Clinton became the Democratic presidential nominee.

Biden’s choice was one that has long been in the works. In March of this year, he revealed that he would make a point to have a woman as his running mate and in July he announced that he had narrowed his picks down to four Black women.

Kamala Harris was elected to Congress in 2016.

This has been Harris’ first term as a senator. Before, she served as the California attorney general. During her time as AG, Harris formed a lasting friendship with Biden’s late son Beau who was attorney general at the time in Delaware. Writing about Beau’s death, in her memoir The Truths We Hold, Harris recalled that “there were periods when I was taking the heat when Beau and I talked every day, sometimes multiple times a day,” she wrote in her memoir. “We had each other’s backs.”

Biden’s son Beau died in 2015 from brain cancer. Harris attended his funeral.

During his announcement, Biden mentioned Harris’ friendship with his son.

“I watched as they took on the big banks, lifted up working people, and protected women and kids from abuse,” Biden tweeted. “I was proud then, and I’m proud now to have her as my partner in this campaign.”

So far, it seems there are quite a bit of Harris x Biden supporters.

Fans were quick to give their support and applaud her candidacy.

In a tweet acknowledging her nomination, Harris wrote “@JoeBiden can unify the American people because he’s spent his life fighting for us. And as president, he’ll build an America that lives up to our ideals. I’m honored to join him as our party’s nominee for Vice President, and do what it takes to make him our Commander-in-Chief.”

Here’s to 2020 y’all. Get ready to make history.

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