Marcus Choi’s terrifically commanding portrayal of George Washington in the remarkable national tour of “Hamilton,” continuing through Feb. 6 at the Schuster Center, exudes grit, tenacity, passion and sincerity.
Credit: Nikki Dalonzo
Credit: Nikki Dalonzo
In the summer of 2018, I saw Choi in the role when this tour stopped in Cleveland. His first-rate performance is still impressive, particularly resonating with conviction and earnestness. His heartfelt deliveries of “History Has Its Eyes on You” and “One Last Time” (both opposite dynamic Pierre Jean Gonzalez as Washington’s titular sidekick during the Revolutionary War) are emotional highpoints. In fact, “One Last Time,” a stirring moment for Choi addressing Washington’s decision to relinquish the presidency, holds greater relevance when viewed from the vantage point of the current political climate. There’s also understated delight in his casual, humorous approach to Washington overseeing Act 2′s fiery “Cabinet Battle,” a fascinating testament to Lin-Manuel Miranda’s lyrical genius and incredible hip-hop aptitude.
Previous credits: Choi has appeared on Broadway in “Flower Drum Song,” “Wicked,” “Sweet Charity,” “Allegiance,” and “Miss Saigon” among others. His TV credits include “FBI,” “Homeland,” “Luke Cage,” “Blindspot” and “Chicago P.D.”
Thoughts on ‘Hamilton’: In a 2018 interview with journalist Lia Chang, Choi reflected on his casting and the significance of diversity: “I feel so fortunate to be able to play this role. I know it’s such a great opportunity for me, but I can’t help but feel like it’s a big win for our community. Asian Americans are the most underrepresented ethnic group in entertainment, and I am so grateful to ‘Hamilton’ for taking the chance and casting Asians in principal roles for this tour.”
HOW TO GO
What: “Hamilton: An American Musical”
Where: Schuster Center, Second and Main Streets, Dayton
When: Through Feb. 6; Feb. 1 at 7:30 p.m.; Feb. 2 at 7:30 p.m.; Feb. 3 at 7:30 p.m.; Feb. 4 at 8 p.m.; Feb. 5 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.; and Feb. 6 at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m.
Length: 2 hours and 50 minutes including a 20-minute intermission
Tickets: Call Ticket Center Stage at 937-228-3630 or visit daytonlive.org.
COVID-19 protocol: Masks are required for patrons over the age of 6
FYI: Be sure to visit daytonlive.org to stay informed of any potential “Hamilton” cancellations before or during its run.
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