I am captivated by the musical Hamilton! It has displaced Wicked as number 1 on my musical theater all around best. What makes a musical an all around best to me, is the storyteller. Do they seem like genuinely brilliant, “with it” people? Are they both relatable and believable. I found Gregory Maguire (although Winnie Holzman wrote the book for the stage play) and Lin Manuel Miranda to fit my criteria.
Seeing Wicked was akin to a religious experience. I’m really not being dramatic, reading the book is equally impactful. Although, I have yet to score a coveted seat for Hamilton, I was utterly heartbroken when Eliza recounted in French she and her son’s piano lessons as he lay dying. I cried as I imagined, how quiet Uptown it must’ve been for the grief stricken parents. I blushed when he met the woman who would become his mistress and cheered during the debates. All while my earphones never left the confines of my ears and my imagination alone was responsible for constructing the scenes.
Most recently, I was reminded of the closing number in Hamilton; “Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tells Your Story”.
This week I found out my spiritual father had passed and social media was ablaze with “their story”.
My eyes burn and the tears well as I compose this because up until two days ago I did not recognize how lonely death could be.
I watched this man give of himself selflessly and because of the gift of information now those that love him are inundated with hustling hatred for likes.
Our stories aren’t ours to tell and I don’t know if I’m okay with that. I’m such a fragile person, with such glaring flaws..I don’t trust these storytellers to be kind to me. Not when as soon as you don’t let someone have their way with you all your good can be evil spoken of. When I can be your friend on your Timeline December 31, 2016 and you talk crazy to me on that same Timeline January 14, 2017 and nothing has transpired between us. I’m not responsible for the storytellers delusions, lack of sensibility, or lack of human decency.
To that end, I’m sure our Founding Fathers never could have imagined their story would be told by an almost completely brown and black cast and that a Puerto Rican would be responsible for its production.
Who would have ever thought we would see the Wicked Witch as anything but, well wicked?
The storyteller determines your legacy, not you!
Here’s the thing about storytellers though, they are all not genuine and many sure don’t give a damn about being truthful.
The only benefit is that your works will outlast the storytellers words.
So what are you waiting for, get to work!
Broken but Building