Javier Muñoz could take center stage sooner than later…
Hamilton conceiver-author-composer-lyricist-star Lin-Manuel Miranda is planning to leave the hit Broadway musical in July, possibly as soon as the 9th, leaving the Puerto Rican Broadway actor, his understudy, in line to take on the role permanently.
Muñoz is no newcomer to the show’s title role. Not only has he been playing Alexander Hamilton regularly on the days Miranda doesn’t take the stage, Sunday matinees, but Miranda — in a brilliant tactical move — had Muñoz perform when the First Family attended the show on Broadway.
Moreover, Muñoz has received glowing reviews, with several critics asserting that he’s a better pure musical-theater actor than Miranda, and that he brings a bit sharper edge to the role.
“It takes a little longer to warm to Mr. Muñoz’s more aggressive and angular Hamilton, who wields his ambition like a sword,” Ben Brantley wrote in a second New York Times review of the Broadway production. “But this interpretation does not upset the balance of a revolutionary show about a revolutionary era that seems better every time I see it. … In other words, should you be able to get seats for Hamilton only on a Sunday, you will not lose out.”
Win or lose the Tony for best performance by a leading actor in a musical on June 12 — one of four Tony Awards he’s up for among the Best Musical front-runner’s historic 16 nominations — Miranda’s departure should have zero impact at the box office.
News of an impending departure came out of a just-released Rolling Stone cover story on Miranda, in which he said that he’s likely to replicate the one-year stint he did in his last Broadway show, In The Heights; Hamilton began performances on Broadway last July following an extended sold-out run at the Public Theater and a break for revisions.