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Michael Luwoye (born December 19, 1990)[2] is an American actor of Nigerian descent, known for playing the title role in the Broadway musical Hamilton.

Michael Luwoye
Born (1990-12-19) December 19, 1990 (age 28)
Alma materUniversity of Alabama
Occupation
  • Actor
  • singer
Years active2011–present

Early life and educationEdit

Michael Luwoye was born in Huntsville, Alabama,[1] the youngest of four children born to immigrants from Nigeria who settled in Alabama in the 1980s.[3] His mother was an engineer, and his father became the owner of a wholesale ice cream distribution business.[3]

An artistic child, Luwoye drew and wrote journals, and learned to play guitar.[3] He learned music theory and composition while attending Lee High School in Huntsville.[3]

He became interested in theatre during his junior year at the University of Alabama.[1] While in college, he played Queequeg in Moby Dick, the title role in Othello, Hud in Hair, and Joe in Show Boat.[1]

Luwoye received his B.A. from the University of Alabama in 2013, and moved to New York in September that year.[1]

Acting careerEdit

Regional and off-BroadwayEdit

In regional theatre, Luwoye has performed in Cardboard Piano (Actors Theatre of Louisville, 2016), Marley (Center Stage, 2015), Witness Uganda (American Repertory Theater, 2014), Tick, Tick... Boom! (American Theater Group), and The Three Musketeers and Once on This Island (Flat Rock Playhouse).[3][4]

Luwoye's off-Broadway stage debut was in the Second Stage Theater production of Invisible Thread,[4][5] for which he received a 2016 Lucille Lortel Award nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical.[6]

HamiltonEdit

In 2016, Luwoye auditioned for the role of Hercules Mulligan in the Broadway production of Hamilton, but unexpectedly was offered the title role.[7] He began rehearsals June 14, 2016, and took over on August 2, 2016 as the alternate to Javier Muñoz for the role of Alexander Hamilton, following Lin-Manuel Miranda's departure from the show.[4][7] Luwoye became the first black actor to take on the role of Hamilton.[3]

He was also the understudy for the role of Aaron Burr, which he first performed two months later, on October 4, 2016.[5][7] On November 16, 2016, Luwoye notably played Hamilton at a matinee and Burr in the evening on the same day.[1][8]

Luwoye was given the title role in Hamilton's national touring company, beginning in March 2017 with a 21-week engagement in San Francisco, followed by 21 weeks in Los Angeles,[9] concluding at the Pantages Theatre on December 30, 2017.[5]

Luwoye returned to Broadway in the title role of Hamilton on January 16, 2018. His last performance was February 17, 2019.[10][5][6]

TelevisionEdit

In November 2017, Luwoye appeared in an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm called "The Shucker", in which he was shown playing the role of Alexander Hamilton in Hamilton. Additionally, he played Hades in an episode of The Magicians on SYFY.

In September 2018, he was signed for a guest voice role in the third season of Disney Junior's animated series The Lion Guard as Askari, the founder and original leader of the Lion Guard in ancient times.[11][12]

In 2019, he was cast in a supporting role on NBC's Bluff City Law.

Theatre creditsEdit

Year Production Role Venue Dates Category
2011 Big River[13] Jim Marian Gallaway Theatre April 2011 Regional
Once on This Island Flat Rock Playhouse June 2011 Regional
Hairspray Flat Rock Playhouse July 20 – August 14, 2011 Regional
City of Angels[13] Stone Allen Bales Theatre November 7–13, 2011 Regional
2012 Side Man[13] Jonesy Marian Gallaway Theatre October 15–21, 2012 Regional
Guys and Dolls Flat Rock Playhouse July 25 – August 19, 2012 Regional
2013 Othello[13] Othello Marian Gallaway Theatre February 2013 Regional
Jubilee: Songs of and About Alabama[13] Ensemble George C. Meyer Performing Arts Center June 2013 Regional
The Three Musketeers Flat Rock Playhouse November 2013 Regional
2014 Empty House[14] Sebastian New York International Fringe Festival August 9–24, 2014 Regional
Fable[14] Richie New York Musical Theatre Festival July 22–27, 2014 Regional
Witness Uganda[15] Jacob American Repertory Theater February 4, 2014 – March 16, 2014 Regional
2015 Marley[13] Peter Tosh Center Stage May 6 – June 14, 2015 Regional
Tick, Tick... Boom![16] Michael Union County Performing Arts Center January 28 – February 8, 2015 Regional
Invisible Thread Jacob Second Stage Theater October 21 – December 27, 2015 Off-Broadway
2016 Cardboard Piano[13] Soldier / Paul Victor Joy Theatre March 25 – April 10, 2016 Regional
Hamilton Alexander Hamilton (alt.) /
Aaron Burr (understudy)
Richard Rodgers Theatre August 2, 2016 – February 14, 2017[17][18] Broadway
2017 Alexander Hamilton Orpheum Theatre March 23 – August 5, 2017 National Tour
Pantages Theatre August 11 – December 30, 2017
2018 Richard Rodgers Theatre January 16, 2018–February 16, 2019 Broadway

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e f Sullivan, Lindsey (January 19, 2018). "Hamilton's Michael Luwoye on His Geeky Obsession & How New York Made Him a New Man". Broadway.com. Archived from the original on 2018-01-19.
  2. ^ Luwoye, Michael (December 19, 2017). "26th year came to a close last night. 27th year begins today". Twitter. Archived from the original on 2018-01-29.
  3. ^ a b c d e f Gelt, Jessica (December 7, 2017). "Michael Luwoye: Once a theater outsider, now he's Alexander Hamilton — in L.A., and soon on Broadway". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on 2018-01-22.
  4. ^ a b c Wild, Stephanie (December 8, 2017). "He Didn't Throw Away His Shot! Take a Look Back on Michael Luwoye's Journey With HAMILTON". Broadway World. Archived from the original on 2018-01-24.
  5. ^ a b c d Gans, Andrew (December 13, 2017). "Michael Luwoye Sets Start Date as Hamilton's New Title Player on Broadway". Playbill. Archived from the original on 2018-01-14.
  6. ^ a b Lefkowitz, Andy (January 16, 2018). "The Story of Tonight! Michael Luwoye Is Hamilton's New Leading Man". Broadway.com. Archived from the original on 2018-01-24.
  7. ^ a b c Clement, Olivia (October 2016). "He Auditioned for Mulligan and Was Cast as Hamilton". Playbill. Archived from the original on 2018-01-14.
  8. ^ Hetrick, Adam (October 7, 2016). "Actor Makes Broadway History as First to Play Hamilton and Burr". Playbill. Archived from the original on 2017-07-17.
  9. ^ Kennedy, Mark (March 26, 2017). "Meet the actor who won the lead in the Hamilton U.S. tour". Seattle Times. Archived from the original on 2017-04-15.
  10. ^ https://twitter.com/MichaelLuwoye/status/1096910871429869569
  11. ^ Clement, Olivia (September 5, 2018). "Season 3 of The Lion Guard to Feature More Broadway Alums". Playbill. Archived from the original on 2018-09-05.
  12. ^ Pedersen, Erik (September 4, 2018). "The Lion Guard Raids Broadway For Guest Voices On Disney Junior Toon". Deadline. Archived from the original on 2018-09-23.
  13. ^ a b c d e f g "Michael Luwoye: Other Works". IMDb. Archived from the original on 2018-01-24.
  14. ^ a b "Michael Luwoye". About the Artists. Retrieved January 25, 2018.
  15. ^ "Witness Uganda". American Repertory Theater. 2014-02-04. Retrieved 2014-02-24.
  16. ^ "tick, tick...BOOM! coming to Hamilton Stage in Rahway from Jan. 28–Feb. 5". Suburban News. NJ.com. January 19, 2015. Archived from the original on 2016-09-18.
  17. ^ Luwoye, Michael (February 14, 2017). "Show # 81: Final Show w/ Hamilton on B'way". Twitter. Archived from the original on 2018-01-29. (Note: contradicts Playbill reference, infra, as to end date.)
  18. ^ "Michael Luwoye: Performer". Playbill. Archived from the original on 2017-07-12. (Note: end date of February 19 contradicted by Luwoye in Twitter status dated 2017-02-14, supra.)

External linksEdit