Creativity 50 2015

Creativity 50 2015: Lin-Manuel Miranda

Actor, Composer, Writer

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Lin-Manuel Miranda
Lin-Manuel Miranda Credit: Matthew Murphy
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"Hamilton" creator Lin-Manuel Miranda has done more than redefine the American musical -- he has forced people to rethink how they view the past and shape the future. The show's hip-hop soundtrack, with lyrics such as "I'm not going to miss my shot," puts a modern spin on the story of the founding fathers and makes Alexander Hamilton as current as any pop star.

Mr. Miranda chose black and Latino actors to play some of the most famous white men in American history, and the colorblind casting effectively connected the country's past with today's headlines. The show has sold out nearly all of its performances, and even President Barack Obama visited the Great White Way to catch a performance.

Mr. Miranda, who received a MacArthur Foundation "Genius" grant this year, has been everywhere these days, from singing the questions on "Jeopardy" to cowriting the music in "Star Wars: The Force Awakens." He's certainly not wasting his shot.