Clemente students Jaden Knox and Delana Lee perform their original rap “The British are Coming”
Sabtecha Contreras, 10th grade:
My experience at Hamilton was way more interesting and worthy than I thought it would be. I figured it would be cool but I was not quite so convinced when Ms. Seemann was talking about it to us. I always thought the way she explained it sounded too good to be true. Once I began to watch videos of the actual musical, interviews of the cast and reviews of other students and visitors, I started to get more and more excited about it all. I really enjoyed how Lin Manuel- Miranda incorporated hip hop styles into historical events to capture modern day audiences and give them knowledge of the past. The Hamilton Musical is an experience that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.
This whole unit and experience was so worth it because we not only got to enjoy ourselves in an experience that will forever be in our minds, but we also got to see visuals of what happened with Hamilton and during his era. The show mostly sticks to the real story of Alexander Hamilton with some minor modifications for dramatic purposes. That means that the musical is practically a history lesson. Thanks to Hamilton, it will be hard for me to forget that Thomas Jefferson became president in The Election of 1800. The source material for the musical may be over 200 years old, but somehow, the show pulls out themes that are still relevant today. Mostly every character is relatable. The musical itself is a mash-up of music genres and people in a way that is reflective of our own society.
Like I mentioned before, with this trip and unit, Lin used hip hop and rap to convey and pass along the message of how Hamilton and the other founding fathers fought for the strengthening of national government. Some things that I learned were that as Secretary of the Treasury, Hamilton’s great achievement was funding the federal debt, which corrected and nationalized the financial chaos inherited from the Revolution. He was responsible for creating the First Bank of the United States. He also played a significant role in generating the Washington administration’s policy of unfriendly neutrality toward the French Revolution and in establishing a rapprochement with Britain. Despite his personal and political dislike of Jefferson, Hamilton was instrumental in securing his victory over Aaron Burr in the presidential election of 1800. That and his following opposition to Burr’s bid to become governor of New York led to his death at Burr’s hands in a duel in 1804.