After being the first guest on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon’s at-home edition, Lin-Manuel Miranda returns to talk all about Hamilton, the Obamas, and flaunt his freestyle skills.
During the three-part interview with Fallon, the Puerto Rican actor and rapper discussed the success of Hamilton, which will hit Disney+ on July 3.
“The way Hamiton has entered the popular conversation and yet more people will see it next Friday and Saturday than have seen it in all of its carnation so far. I can’t wrap my head around it,” Miranda said of the difference between theater and film.
He also recalled his nerve-wracking experience performing for Barack and Michelle Obama in 2009 at the White House.
“If you want to see me at my most afraid, you can watch that video,” he said. “Because I know that Hamilton is a bad elevator pitch, I think the audience thought it was a joke, like a School House rock thing, an epic rap battle. If you watch the video, my eyes are constantly scanning around cause’ I’m looking for an escape route. Like, how do I get out of the East Room? What are all the exits? How about if I bomb in front of the President of the United States?”
He added: “They get sucked into the story. That’s been the experience of Hamilton. It’s a weird idea… the story is so remarkable that people get sucked in.”
In the midst of the Black Lives Matter demonstrations, protesters have written Hamilton quotes on their signs, which makes Miranda “incredibly proud.”
“So much of the show is about legacy and how you can’t control it. You can only make what you make and do what you do and the rest is really not up to you,” he noted. “I’m incredibly proud when I see ‘this is not a moment, it’s a movement’ or ‘history has its eyes on you’ at a Black Lives Matter protest.”
He also addressed how the show’s tone shifts depending on what is going on in the United States. “What’s weird about the show…because it brushes up against the origins of our country, it just hits differently depending on where we are as a country.”
In addition, Miranda talked about his We are freestyle Love Supreme documentary coming out July 17 on Hulu, his Raise Up Fund, which helps Black and Brown communities affected by the pandemic, and flaunted his freestyle skills based on random objects like cereal, face masks, popcorn, and Nintendo Switches.
Watch the clips below: