How To Make A 'Hamilton' Parody

After seeing Hamilton when it was at The Public Theater and then following its subsequent command of the cultural zeitgeist, Gerard Alessandrini knew he had to get to work. 

But the godfather of Forbidden Broadway, the playful series of theatrical parodies which began in 1982, also knew that his new show would be different. 

"I was getting a little discouraged about the Broadway shows that weren't big enough to be spoofable," he says. "That is, the general public didn't know them well enough." 

Hamilton was the cure for his blues. For well over a year, both the musical itself and Lin-Manuel Miranda, its creator and star, have been impossible to ignore. As Alessandrini says, "There was so much there to spoof." 

So much so that Alessandrini felt he could create an entire parody about Hamiltonand not just make it another slot in the next edition of Forbidden Broadway. (The last one was 2014's Forbidden Broadway Comes Out Swinging.). 

Thus, he has created Spamiltonwhich is now playing at the Triad.

But how do you marry the loose and spiky structure of Forbidden Broadway, which parodies dozens of shows in a rapid parade of songs, with a focus on a single blockbuster? "I wanted to make Spamilton loosely structured, so that was a bit of a challenge," Alessandrini says. "I was still trying to give it a revue feel so we could touch on many subjects. I wanted to have my cake and eat it too."