Hamilton’s America, the documentary that explores the making of the smash-hit musical, began taking shape before creator-star Lin-Manuel Miranda even knew what Hamilton was going to be. Because of that, the project is filled not just with performance footage (though there is plenty of that), but also glimpses of Miranda writing the Tony- and Pulitzer Prize-winning production — some of which he did in a very fitting location.
In the exclusive clip above, Miranda is seen writing “My Shot” in Aaron Burr’s bedroom, 18 months before the show’s Broadway opening night.
“It’s amazing to be in the space where he was in the later part of his life — talk about artist in residence, literally,” he says.
Miranda describes the tune, which comes early in the musical, as Alexander Hamilton’s big “I Want” song. It’s where he teams up with the group of men that are his friends and compatriots during the American Revolution — including Burr, who becomes his adversary and fateful duel partner by the show’s end.
“These are guys who are oil and water, but they come up together,” Miranda explains of Hamilton and Burr. “They’re revolutionaries together, they’re soldiers together, they’re lawyers together, they’re elected officials together — and, at some point, one shoots the other.”
Watch Miranda at work in the clip above. Hamilton’s America, directed by Alex Horwitz and produced by RadicalMedia, premieres Friday at 9 p.m. ET on Great Performances on PBS.