Skip to main content Skip to footer site map
Review: HAMILTON at The Paramount Theatre

Review: HAMILTON at The Paramount Theatre

The phenom is back and as glorious as ever.

Review: HAMILTON at The Paramount Theatre
Julius Thomas III and the
North American Tour of Hamilton.
Photo credit: Joan Marcus

The juggernaut, the glory, the hot ticket in town has returned. Yes, "Hamilton", that multiple Tony Award winning phenomenon that's still a big seller on Broadway has made its way back to Seattle and, good news, you have a bit over a month to catch it. Even better news, they're doing the lottery for $10 tickets again. And possibly the best news, this production and its cast are fantastic!

The Lin-Manuel Miranda opus is, of course, just as great as it ever was as we examine the life and eventual (spoiler alert) death of one of our founding fathers, Alexander Hamilton. A man who worked his way up from nothing, an immigrant with no family or prospects, only to become one of the framers of our government and the man who launched the US to be a financial superpower in the world. But expect no white wigs or old English as this history is told by largely people of color and through hip hop, rap and musical theater. The history is still there but with a bit of poetic license and a very modern package.

With Miranda's book, music and lyrics, combined with Andy Blankenbuehler's killer choreography, this show ranks up there for me as one of those few perfect pieces. So, it's a small wonder that it's still the phenom that it was when it started back in 2015.

But as good as the show is, it still requires a powerhouse cast to be able to tell it just right. It is NOT an easy show. A show like this requires an outstanding Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton to lead the story. (Check and check.) And some magnificent Schuyler sisters as the heart of the piece. (Triple check.) Let's start with those strong-willed sisters. Marja Harmon leads them off beautifully as the eldest Angelica and when you hear her reach those crescendos in "Satisfied", you'll think you've heard from the Gods. Not to be outdone is Milika Cherée (an understudy on the night I attended) as Eliza, Alexander's loving and beleaguered wife, who brought us to tears by the end. And let's not forget the often-forgotten Peggy who didn't have much as Peggy but as Maria Reynolds, Rebecca E. Covington nailed it!

Equally powerful were the trio of guys Paris Nix, Brandon Louis Armstrong and understudy Justin Showell (understudies, they get the job done!) as Alexander's cohorts in Act One and foils and son in Act Two. Nix was a delicious rogue in both roles and Armstrong brought in some mighty vocals. But it was Showell who broke our hearts as Laurens, and Alexander's son Philip. I must mention the commanding Commander in Chief, Darnell Abraham and our hysterical King George, Rick Negron. And, of course, one of the hardest working ensembles around today.

Review: HAMILTON at The Paramount Theatre
Julius Thomas III and Donald Webber, Jr. in Hamilton.
Photo credit: Joan Marcus

But this show is carried by Burr and, of course, by the titular Hamilton and the two we had, Donald Webber, Jr. and Julius Thomas III, were outstanding. Webber starts the show with a subtle but wry smile from the get-go, giving us a very layered and heartfelt performance. Especially during his "Dear Theodosia" which elicited more than a few hankies. And Thomas has enough stage presence for 10 Hamiltons with his expressive eyes and stunner smile. And both brought in the most crystal clear and formidable vocals of the night. Both were an absolute pleasure to watch and listen to and rank up there with some of the best I've seen.

If you've never seen Hamilton live (and you really should as the Disney + recording can't compare to seeing it in person) or you've never seen it at all, I'm not sure what you're waiting for. And if you have seen it, no one is saying you can't partake in a little Hamilton goodness again, and this one will certainly satisfy. And so, with my three-letter rating system, I give the North American Tour of "Hamilton" currently at the Paramount Theatre a patriotic YAY. Just go and be in the room where it happens.

"Hamilton" performs at the Paramount Theatre through September 11th. For tickets or information visit Seattle Theatre Group online at www.stgpresents.org.




From This Author - Jay Irwin

         Born and raised in Seattle, WA, Jay has been a theater geek for years.  He attends as many shows as he can around the country and loves taking in new exciting... (read more about this author)


Review: HAMILTON at The Paramount Theatre
August 5, 2022

The juggernaut, the glory, the hot ticket in town has returned. Yes, “Hamilton”, that multiple Tony Award winning phenomenon that’s still a big seller on Broadway has made its way back to Seattle and, good news, you have a bit over a month to catch it. Even better news, they’re doing the lottery for $10 tickets again. And possibly the best news, this production and its cast are fantastic!

Review: COME FROM AWAY at 5th Avenue Theatre
July 23, 2022

Dear Readers, if you feel you don’t want/need to see the musical “Come From Away”, currently playing at the 5th Avenue Theatre, I’m here to tell you, you’re wrong.

Review: TITANISH at Seattle Public Theater
July 16, 2022

The Habit has done it again! First, they wowed us with their hilarious sketch comedy, then branched out into sidesplitting playwrighting with the recurring “A Very Die Hard Christmas”, not to mention their “Indiana Jones” send up. But now The Habit in conjunction with Seattle Public Theater have set their sights on that 90’s epic love story that just couldn’t be sunk, “Titanic”, with their hysterical “Titanish”. And their new show proves they know good comedy.

Review: HADESTOWN at The Paramount Theatre
July 13, 2022

Dear Readers, every now and again something comes through town that takes musical theater to a whole new level. The Tony Award winner for Best Musical “Hadestown”, currently playing at the Paramount Theatre is one of those shows. And sadly, even with its Tony win, too few people know about it. Let’s try and correct that shall we?

Review: LIZZIE from Just Us Girls & Co.
June 25, 2022

Dear Readers, if you’re not familiar with the rock musical “Lizzie” with music by Steven Cheslik-deMeyer and Alan Stevens Hewitt and Lyrics by Steven Cheslik-deMeyer and Tim Maner then I pity you. This kick ass, girl power show has one of the most infectious scores that I’ve come across in years. But I can also offer you some good news, as theater company Just Us Girls & Co. have brought this rocking tale to Seattle and just in time it seems. Now some bad news, it’s only running for two weekends, so I implore you to get your tickets now!