It’s a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour Hamilton and Me An Actor’s Journal by Olivier Award-Winning Actor Giles Terera.
“This is one of the most joyous and clear-eyed approaches to playing a character that I have ever read” Lin-Manuel Miranda
About the Author
Giles Terera MBE is an award-winning actor, musician and writer. He trained at Mountview Theatre School and has worked consistently at venues such as the National Theatre, the Royal Shakespeare Company and Shakespeare’s Globe. He is best known for originating the role of Aaron Burr in the London production of the award-winning musical Hamilton, for which he won the 2018 Olivier Award for Best Actor in a Musical.
His other theatre credits include Rosmersholm, The Tempest, Avenue Q, The Book of Mormon, 125th Street, Rent (West End); Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Hamlet, Death and the King’s Horseman, The Hour We Knew Nothing of Each Other, Troilus and Cressida, Candide, Honk! (National Theatre); The Merchant of Venice (Shakespeare’s Globe/international tour); The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui (Donmar Warehouse);Pure Imagination – The Songs of Lesley Bricusse (St. James’s); King John (Shakespeare’s Globe/UK tour); Don’t You Leave Me Here (West Yorkshire Playhouse); The Playboy of the Western World (Abbey, Dublin); The Ratpack (West End/international tour); Jailhouse Rock (Theatre Royal Plymouth/West End); You Don’t Kiss (Stratford Circus); Up on the Roof (Chichester); The Tempest (RSC); Six Degrees of Separation (Sheffield); Generations of the Dead (Young Vic); Bill Shakespeare’s Italian Job (Playbox, Warwick/Gilded Balloon, Edinburgh); The Demon Headmaster/The Animals of Farthing Wood (Pleasance, Edinburgh).
As a writer, his theatre work includes The Meaning of Zong (Bristol Old Vic), The Ballad of Soho Jones (St. James’) and the upcoming Black Matter (Crazy Coqs). As a filmmaker, Giles’s first documentary, Muse of Fire – created with Dan Poole – centres on modern perspectives of Shakespeare and premiered on BBC Four in Autumn 2013. Giles was an associate producer on Poole’s feature documentary The Space: Theatre of Survival and he wrote and directed the concert film Hello Harry! A Celebration. Giles was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2020 New Year Honours for services to theatre. Follow @GilesTerera on Twitter, or gilesterera on Instagram
About the book
Hamilton and Me: An Actor’s Journal is an honest and thrilling inside account written by one of the UK’s leading actors, Giles Terera, who played Aaron Burr in the London production of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s smash-hit, award-winning musical Hamilton which opened in London’s West End in December 2017 and won a record-equaling seven Olivier Awards.
One of the most important actors of his generation, Giles Terera was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in 2020 for his services to theatre. Before securing a lead role in Hamilton, Giles Terera worked as a writer, producer and filmmaker and performed in West End shows such as Avenue Q, The Book of Mormon and Rent, and at the UK’s most prestigious venues including the National Theatre and Shakespeare’s Globe alongside the likes of Jonathan Pryce, Lenny Henry, Hayley Atwell and Ralph Fiennes.
At a time when performing arts is desperately missed, this is a wonderful opportunity to not only step back into the auditorium but explore behind the scenes to gain a rare insight into one of the most important cultural spectacles of our time, and enjoy an experience that would typically remain a mystery.
This new and deeply personal book reveals Giles Terera’s unique experiences from his own life that helped shape his acclaimed portrayal as Aaron Burr – a journey which began more than a year earlier with his first audition in New York. Hamilton and Me: An Actor’s Journal explores everything involved in opening a once-in-a-generation production, from the extensive research and preparation to intense rehearsals, preview performances and finally opening night itself.
Throughout this exhilarating time, Terera kept a journal, recording his experiences of the production and his process of creating his award-winning performance. This book, Hamilton and Me, is that journal. It also features unseen colour photographs and an exclusive foreword by Hamilton creator and original star Lin-Manuel Miranda.
In Hamilton and Me: An Actor’s Journal we learn of the triumphs, breakthroughs and doubts, the camaraderie of the rehearsal room and the moments of quiet backstage contemplation – as well as a fascinating, in-depth exploration of now-iconic songs and moments from the world-famous musical, as seen from the inside.
If I had had any doubts about reading this then the foreword by Lin-Manuel Miranda would have swayed me with his beautiful words and description of this book.
It’s an open, frank and revealing piece of work. It’s an in-depth, soul searching and intimate experience, also an eye opener. At the same time it’s entertaining – if I am allowed to say that about something that is so much hard work and yet such fun to watch, enjoy and interact with.
I would recommend this book for anyone in the acting profession, especially anyone doing theatre or musical theatre. It gives a real insight into the process, but also the thought process as the actor immerses themselves into the role. Written in a journal, in brief moments to, from and in between. Bits and pieces, fragmented thoughts cushioned out to become an excellent experience of interaction.
Simultaneously I would also recommend it to anyone who loves the theatre – it’s a glimpse of how it all comes together, and also of how much passion and dedication goes into portraying a character and into a performance.
It’s offset with beautiful pictures of the performance, the rehearsals, and cast. Truly a delightful reading experience.
Buy Hamilton and Me: An Actor’s Journal at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Nick Hern Books | pub date 1 July 2021 | Hardback, Ebook, Audiobook | RRP £16.99. Buy at nickhernbooks.co.uk