A rendering of “Hamilton: The Exhibition.” (Provided by David Korins Design.)
You can be in the room where it all happened — or at least, that’s what it’ll seem like. Hamilton: The Exhibition offers a love letter to the hit musical. This historical journey through the lifetime of Alexander Hamilton is set to open in Chicago on Northerly Island on April 27. It will remain for a limited engagement in Chicago through September 8 and then travel to a slated number of cities around the country.
The exhibit is an immersive experience intended to enable audiences to see life through Hamilton’s eyes. Through the use of multimedia effects and historical items, visitors will journey through Hamilton’s upbringing in St. Croix to his rise in the early American government, and finally to the fateful hilltop in New Jersey where Burr fatally shot Hamilton in their duel. Immersed in Hamilton’s tumultuous lifetime, visitors will also glean a deeper understanding of the foundations of our country and the shaping of democracy.
Lin-Manuel Miranda, the Pulitzer-Prize winning mind behind the hit musical Hamilton, lends his voice to the audio guide, where he educates audiences about the sacrifices and risks endured to build America from its roots through collaboration, reasoning, and process.
The exhibition is a joint effort between Miranda, Hamilton director Thomas Kail, David Korins, creative director and set designer, producer Jeffrey Seller, orchestrator Alex Lacamoire, and Yale University historian Joanne Freeman. Harvard Law Professor and historian Annette Gordon-Reed is also providing historical consultation.
While the exhibit was initially slated to open on April 6, executives delayed opening for three weeks due to extreme weather conditions and delays in the Chicago area. “In the weeks leading up to our early April opening, we have been challenged by a polar vortex, some delays at Customs, and other unforeseen obstacles,” said Seller in a statement. “All frustrating, but all solvable. Hamilton: The Exhibition is taking shape on Northerly Island as we speak, and we can’t wait to welcome our first visitors in late April.”
A visit into Hamilton’s world won’t come cheap (though not as expensive as a ticket to the actual show. Timed entry is priced at $39.50 for adults, $32.50 for senior/military and $25 for youth ages 4 to 14 years old.
Broadway In Chicago’s CIBC Theatre is currently home to the musical production of Hamilton, where it has been in residence since September 2016. Hamilton is also still on Broadway at the Richard Rodgers Theatre and has productions running in London, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. Miranda just finished a return run as the title character in the Puerto Rican production in San Juan.