"Hamilton" wins 2016 Edward M. Kennedy

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Daveed Diggs (left), Okieriete Onaodowan, Anthony Ramos, and Lin-Manuel Miranda in ''Hamilton.'' / Photograph by Joan Marcus

Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton recently won Columbia’s 2016 Edward M. Kennedy Prize for Drama Inspired by American History. The hip-hop musical based on Ron Chernow’s 2004 biography Alexander Hamilton reimagines the American Revolution and the early years of the Republic with a cast of predominantly Black and Latino actors. Ambassador Jean Kennedy Smith created the $100,000 prize, administered by Columbia Libraries, to honor her brother, the late senator from Massachusetts. This year’s jury, which included Columbia professors Farah Jasmine Griffin, Rashid Khalidi, and James Shapiro ’77CC, selected Hamilton because it “celebrates the evolving history of the United States, of hip-hop, and of the musical theater.” (For more on Hamilton, see Columbia Magazine’s Winter 2015 feature story “Hamilton is in the House.”)

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