Lin-Manuel Miranda somehow manages to squeeze out more stuff in his day than other mere mortals.
You name it, the Tony Award-winning composer-lyricist of Broadway’s “In the Heights” is probably doing it. A rap album about Alexander Hamilton? OK. A musical about cheerleaders? Oh, yes. Taking his sketch comedy group onto TV? Indeed.
So it seems perfectly natural for the 32-year-old to find himself this month in a Stephen Sondheim musical. Miranda is starring in a revival of “Merrily We Roll Along” at the New York City Center from Feb. 8-19 as part of its popular Encores! musical theater series.
The musical, which runs backward in time from 1976 to 1955, examines the lives of three people whose friendship is tested. It features some of Sondheim’s best songs, including “Not a Day Goes By,” “Old Friends,” “Our Time” and “Opening Doors.”
But, naturally, that’s not all that’s on Miranda’s plate. The night before he sat down for a recent interview, Miranda was up late writing a song for a TV pilot based on his freestyle hip-hop comedy crew Freestyle Love Supreme that’s slated to land on Cartoon Network’s “Adult Swim.”
Miranda is also working on a full-length recording of “The Hamilton Mixtape,” a 12-song hip-hop retelling of the life and death of the Founding Father, which he premiered in front of the first family at the White House in 2009.
And then there’s the score to “Bring It On: The Musical,” which he’s co-writing with Amanda Green and Tom Kitt. That musical, based on the popular cheerleading movies, is touring the U.S. and Canada, and Miranda is making tweaks as it goes.
He is getting some top-notch help along the way – from Sondheim. They are friends, having worked together on the Spanish translations for the 2009 Broadway revival of “West Side Story.” Miranda, a born-and-bred New Yorker from the rough-and-tumble Washington Heights neighborhood, now sends demos of “The Hamilton Mixtape” to the legend himself.
Click here for our recap of The Hamilton Mixtape performance at Lincoln Center.