Credit: Lin-Manuel Miranda
It was back-to-school time again in September, and this time not even Lin-Manuel Miranda could escape it.
Miranda packed up his backpack, number 2 pencils, and calculator and went back to his old stomping grounds, the famed Hunter College High School, where he attended K-12. Located in New York’s upper westside, the school is for the “intellectually gifted,” so it’s a no brainer that Miranda is among the school’s notable alumni, I mean, he is a MacArthur Genius after-all.
During his visit, he got to sit down with his old Theater Advisor, Gina Nocera McCourt, and boy did they reminisce.
I just went and visited my old high school this morning to reunite with our beloved theater advisor Gina Nocera McCourt she is THE BEEEST pic.twitter.com/ADMhUW2lQd
— Lin-Manuel Miranda (@Lin_Manuel) September 1, 2017
Miranda schooled McCourt on how it all began for him. He says it was his first big role in his first musical in 9th grade that got the ball rolling for him, saying “That’s like everything when you’re in High School.”
In the video we can see footage of teenage Miranda as the Pirate King in “Pirates Of Penzance,” which he tells McCourt was his favorite show in High School. Even in that grainy footage you can make out the raw talent. He was vibrant and full of life on that stage. Jumping around and smiling while singing.
Miranda told her he remembered the applause from his very first performance of Pirates of Penzance, calling it “the favorite applause” he’s ever gotten. It impacted him so much that, he says, he’s been chasing that high ever since.
They also took the time to discuss his educational initiative called Hamilton Educational Initiative or #EduHam for short, which brings students to viewings of “Hamilton,” for only $10 a ticket.
But, as Miranda says, it isn’t just to watch the show. The experience also includes performances by the students about different aspects of history that, Miranda says, he really enjoys.
The footage was used in the XQ Super School Live telethon to raise awareness of their educational initiative.
Credit: XQ America
XQ is an initiative to help reimagine what school is and all that it can be, reinventing the wheel for the betterment of the students. The program awarded 10 proposals, $10 million each to help create the ideal high school. Towards the end of the interview, Miranda and MacCourt end with a sweet moment, where he thanks her for teaching him.
And excuse me while I reach for a tissue and call up my high school English teacher. 😭