Hamilton and Me, Giles Terera | Book Review

Sunday 11 July 2021

Hamilton and Me by Giles Terera
Published: 1st July 2021 by Nick Hern Book

While working to bring the smash hit musical Hamilton to the West End stage, Giles Terera kept a journal which chronicled the journey and now provides a wonderfully moving insight into the process that so few get to be part of. However, instead of just being a diary which looks at the day to day process of putting on a show, this book is an honest and academic look at what it takes physically and mentally.

Throughout the rehearsal period, Terera takes a methodical approach to playing the role of Aaron Burr; he looks at what made Burr do the things he did, as well as comparing his own journey and life experiences to the character. It's quite amazing to see just how much mental work goes into making Burr as well-rounded as he comes across in the musical. 

What is also striking about this book is how humble Terera seems. The way he openly discusses his fears, weaknesses and struggles comes across very genuinely and as an outsider, it's particularly interesting to see how he overcomes his struggles and pushes through the intense process without breaking down. His rawness clearly comes across in his portrayal of Burr and it's no surprise that he received rave reviews and praise when the show opened in London.

Hamilton and Me: An Actor's Journal serves as a snapshot of time and masterfully takes readers on a journey they would rarely get to go on, of even really understand. Terera offers an exhilarating look at a musical stripped down to its simple roots and lets us be both in the room where it happens as well as watching the room be formed. This is a real treat of a book and a must-read for theatre lovers and aspiring performers.

Reviewed by Olivia Mitchell

{AD PR Product- book gifted in exchange for honest review}