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Broadway 2016: Hip, diverse and more relevant than ever
With "Hamilton" leading the pack of interesting, edgy and timely shows, Broadway is reflecting some of the most important issues in America today. - photo by Chandra Johnson
Broadways Hamilton, the rap-based retelling of Alexander Hamiltons life, has made history this spring, first winning the Pulitzer Prize and then breaking records for the most Tony nominations ever for a Broadway show (it boasts 16, beating out the 15 nominations previously held by The Producers).

Regardless of the controversy surrounding show creator Lin-Manuel Mirandas supposed sugar-coating of the Founding Fathers, many critics have praised Hamilton, with its highly diverse cast and focus on early American financial struggles, as being especially timely as race tensions flare across the country and Donald Trump rises to the GOP nomination partially out of Americans frustration with political elitism.

But this year, Hamilton was just one example of Broadway shows reflecting the state of affairs and xenophobia across the country, as the New York Times wrote in an analysis of a singular year for theater, including shows like the stage adaptation of Alice Walkers novel, The Color Purple, working-class tragedy The Humans, or the revival of Arthur Millers The Crucible. From the standpoint of apropos timing to the inclusivity of minority actors, the future of Broadway looks brighter and more diverse than ever, critics argued.

Each is a reminder that theres more than one way to control the narrative (to use the most overused phrase du jour) and to translate history into the present tense, Times critic Ben Brantley wrote.
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