From Lin-Manuel Miranda, the creator of the hit musical, Hamilton, In the Heights is Miranda’s first musical masterpiece. This show brings the iconic neighborhood of Washington Heights, New York to life on stage and you can be a part of it in Milwaukee for a short time as In the Heights is Milwaukee Repertory Theater’s fall musical. If you enjoy catchy tunes and Latin flare you’re sure to enjoy this show.
In the Heights depicts a three-day span of time in the lives of many residents of Washington Heights, New York. These individuals live in what they refer to as the barrio and many of them desire to have a life bigger and better than the Heights. This show can be perceived in a number of different ways but what I took away from the story is that life is short and you must embrace your roots and the cards that you have been dealt. If you look at life as the glass being half empty then you’ll go through life wishing that you had something else, maybe even something better. Challenges will present themselves throughout your life but it is up to you how you deal with these challenges. It’s important to remember to lean on family and friends to help you get through the tough times. If you try to run away from your problems it doesn’t solve the issue at hand and the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.
The energy in this show is electric. Ryan Alvarado who plays the main character, Usnavi, does a great job matching the energy and vibe of this character who in the original Broadway production was played by Lin-Manuel Miranda himself. The beauty shop girls, Abuela Claudia, Vanessa, Benny, Nina, and all of the other characters were portrayed wonderfully as well. I really enjoyed the performance of Henry Gainza who played the Piragua Guy who is probably the most underrated character in the entire show. I walked out of the theater wishing he was standing on the street corner serenading me with the Piragua song and selling me one of these tasty treats. (He was my husband’s favorite character as well.)
The singing and salsa dancing was on fire throughout the show and this cast kept the audience engaged throughout the show. I’d highly recommend if you’re into musicals, especially the new age shows such as Hamilton, that you check out In the Heights during it’s Milwaukee run. After Milwaukee, this cast heads to the Seattle Repertory Theater and then the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park. Catch the Heights in Milwaukee through October 28.
Tickets can be purchased online, by calling the Milwaukee Rep’s ticket office at 414-224-9490 or visiting the ticket office in-person at 108 East Wells Street, Milwaukee, WI 53202 while it is open Sunday – Friday from Noon – 6:00 PM.
Be sure to check it out, I thoroughly enjoyed this production both times I saw it. Tickets are selling quickly so don’t hesitate and buy yours today otherwise you may miss out! If you’re unsure, check out the photos from the show below and you may just make up your mind.
“¡No pare, sigue, sigue!”
📸 Photo Credit: Michael Brosilow