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tv   60 Minutes  CBS  December 25, 2016 7:00pm-8:01pm PST

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captioning funded by cbs and ford. we go further, so you can. ♪ ♪ >> on this christmas night, we bring you a holiday treat, a special encore performance from what's called the sistine chapel choir, but is more commonly known as the pope's choir. ♪ ♪ beneath michelangelo's masterpiece, you'll hear the soaring, sacred music, from the oldest choir in the world. ♪ ♪ >> ♪ i'm past patiently waitin' ♪ i'm passionately smashin' every expectation ♪ every action's an act of creation... >> the show has reached the loftiest heights.
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♪ ♪ and it is well on it's way to become a billion-dollar musical. >> ♪ what did i miss? >> it has become almost impossible to land a ticket. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ those lucky enough to get in never know who might be sitting next to them. the president of the united states? >> at our sixth preview. it put my dreams to shame. ( laughs ) >> i'm steve kroft. >> i'm leslie stahl. >> i'm bill whitaker. >> i'm charlie rose. >> i'm scott pelley. those stories, tonight on "60 minutes." >> cbs money watch sponsored by american express open. proud supporter of growing businesses. >> reporter: good evening.
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>> rose: we are about to do something we have never done in 49 years of "60 minutes," broadcast the same story two weeks in a row. but this one's special, and our present for you on christmas night. it is the oldest choir in the world. evidence of its existence dates back to the seventh century. today, it's called the sistine chapel choir but is more commonly known as the pope's choir. that's because it's at the pope's side for all of the important papal celebrations. the choir may be dedicated to the pope, but historically it has held concerts on its own, especially at its home base, the magnificent sistine chapel. ♪ ♪
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it was here, beneath michelangelo's breathtaking frescoes in one of the world's greatest wonders, where we recently attended a concert staged by the pope's choir. ♪ ♪ ( "gloria" from palestrina's "missa papae marcelli" ) ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ the music is sacred, contemplative, mystical. it soars whether in concert at the sistine chapel or during mass next door at st. peter's basilica. when the pope presides, the
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choir provides a holy soundtrack made up of 30 boys and 22 men. the choir helps spread the pope's message. ♪ ♪ >> mark spyropoulos: we have a job to inspire people. they may not understand a word of what's going on at the vatican, but, when they hear us singing, we have to direct them to consider something which is transcendent and divine. that's our job. >> rose: mark spyropoulos, a baritone from britain; vittorio catarci, a bass from italy; and cezary arkadiusz stoch, a tenor from poland, consider themselves more than just voices of the pope. what does it mean that you're called the pope's choir? >> catarci: well, we are, we are. >> stoch: the family. >> catarci: pope's family. >> rose: pope's family. >> catarci: yes. his personal choir. >> rose: pope francis is the most popular pope in a generation. he spends much time tending to the poor and the dispossessed. it is this humility that also
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makes his choir feel at home, as mark spyropolous learned when he joined last year. >> spyropolous: when i first met him, the whole thing was completely overwhelming. and he said, "you're from london. ( laughs ) well, welcome to the vatican," like this. and i was expecting, you know, sort of... i was so welcomed by this. i... it was very surprising and very impressed by quite how... what a personal touch he had. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ >> rose: as it tours italy, performing in some of the country's great cathedrals, the choir sings in harmony. ( cremona concert, allegri's "miserere" ) ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ but until recently, the pope's
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choir wasn't worthy of the name or the settings where it sang. for decades, the choir lacked cohesion. many members came from opera and made sure they were heard. ♪ ♪ the choir was called the" sistine screamers." >> catarci: we were aware that we were singing too loud. >> rose: vittorio catarci remembers the era of the booming voices. he's been with the choir for 30 years and three popes. can you sing for me the difference between the way it was and the way it is now? >> catarci: oh, for example we used to sing: ♪ sicut cervus. and now we sing: ♪ sicut cervus. it's completely different because we are looking for a very spiritual sound, not a meaty sound.
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>> rose: the choir turned around after maestro massimo palombella was hired in 2010, only the sixth man to be appointed director of the pope's choir in 200 years. >> palombella ( translated ): i didn't have to invent a sound, i had to rediscover a sound which was the sound the choir once produced in the sistine chapel. >> rose: palombella went back to the past, combining high-tech and ancient texts. he studied endlessly, looking for the precise vocal range that palestrina originally intended when he wrote the sacred music that provides the bulk of the choir's repertoire. palestrina composed his music with the sistine chapel in mind after michelangelo had finished painting his masterpiece. >> spyropolous: palestrina was writing when the paint was still wet of these incredible frescoes.
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and when we sing palestrina, it's not like looking at a fresco; it's the equivalent of being in a fresco. ♪ ♪ ( "credo" from palestrina's "papae marcelli" ) ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ >> rose: maestro palombella also softened the tone by hardening the workload. the choir went from rehearsing three hours a week to three hours a day. so, you have to be a perfectionist? tough. >> palombella ( translated ): that's exactly right. >> rose: if you are on a journey of excellence, how far along are you on your journey? >> palombella: circa a meta. >> rose: halfway. you sound like an american sports coach. >> catarci: a choir is a very, very terrifying beast because if you are not able to handle it, it goes away.
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it runs away. >> stoch: this not safari. this is more dangerous. >> catarci: you have to handle the choir. we were compared to a ferrari, but you have to drive ferrari to do dressage like, you know, like the horses. just little bend, little, you know, very light dressage. dressage, not vroom! ♪ ♪ >> rose: at rehearsal and in concert, palombella conducts the choir like a manic traffic cop. the maestro was born on christmas day, but, with his choir, he's not always in a holiday mood. >> palombella: blah, blah, blah. >> rose: for the boys in the choir, commands from the maestro can be jolting. and when he's not happy, lorenzo? >> malizia ( translated ): eh, eh, he has moments of...
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>> malizia ( translated ): he has some explosions of anger, but then he calms down because then we sing the piece properly. >> rose: 13-year-old lorenzo malizia is one of the boys, all sopranos, who are able to produce the high notes that give the choir its celestial sound. just listen to how the boys warm up. ( singing in high voices ) ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ the vatican refers to them as the "white voices" for the purity of their sound. >> choir: ♪ ave maria. ♪ ♪
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♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ >> rose: at home, like many italian boys their age, they have ordinary pictures on their walls. and then, there are reminders of why the boys are extraordinary. so, when people ask you about the pope, what do you tell them? >> catapano ( translated ): they ask us, "how is the pope? is he fun?
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does he always crack jokes?" we say, "yes, yes, it's true." so, he's fun. >> rose: 13-year-old riccardo catapano has been in the pope's choir for four years. i'd be nervous if i were singing in front of the pope. >> catapano ( translated ): i am little anxious, but then i think that the pope does not understand anything about music. he only says how beautiful it sounds. so, i continue to sing. >> rose: across rome, auditions for the choir are held in the second and third grades. several times a year... ...instructors fan out to see who has the right timbre. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ 700 boys are tested a year in all. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
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it can be painstaking. few make it. >> ciao, ciao, ciao. >> rose: only a dozen at most are selected annually. the chosen ones are sworn in during an elaborate ceremony. each are given five-year scholarships at a special school in the center of rome. they aren't studying to become priests; their curriculum runs the gamut. >> are you italian? >> i am. >> rose: they may be known as choir boys on sundays, but the rest of the week they are typical boys on the cusp of their teenage years. these are hallowed times for the boys, until the day arrives when their voices break and they must leave the pope's choir. they can return as adults, but 11-year-old emanuele buccarella fears what's coming soon. what happens when your voice breaks? will that be a sad day?
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>> buccarella ( translated ): for me, it will be an ugly moment when that time will come in which my voice will no longer be ready to sing the way we sing now. i try to make the most of everything now until that day will come in which they tell me my voice is no longer good to sing. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ >> rose: in their remaining time with the choir, their voices will join those of their adult brethren to bring the sounds of heaven to earth. the music of the pope's choir speaks to the soul. >> palombella ( translated ): we recently did a concert, and a man came up to me at the end of the concert and said that the choir that i conduct is missing one thing: wings. >> rose: wings. to go as an angel. >> palombella ( translated ): like an angel. ( "amen" from victoria's "o magnum mysterium" ) ♪ ♪
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>> rose: if you didn't get everything you wanted for christmas this year, we've got the ticket: an encore presentation of our story about the breakthrough musical "hamilton." while the original cast has moved on, the show is thriving, opening in cities across the country. and its creator, 36-year-old lin-manuel miranda, is collecting awards-- writing, acting and songwriting-- the same hard work that led to his masterpiece. we originally broadcast this story 16 months ago, shortly after opening night on broadway. tonight, you'll see an expanded version that includes more of the remarkable performances and more about hamilton himself, who was one of the most brilliant figures in american history. >> lin-manuel miranda: the thing about hamilton is he spoke in paragraphs. so the opening sentence of our show is this crazy run-on sentence.
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"how does a bastard orphan, son of a whore and a scotsman, dropped in the middle of a forgotten spot in the caribbean by providence, impoverished in squalor, comma, grow up to be a hero and a scholar?" that's the question we're going to answer for the next two hours and 45 minutes. ♪ i'm past patiently waitin' ♪ i'm passionately smashin' every expectation ♪ every action's an act of creation... >> rose: in "hamilton," the answers come fast. >> alexander hamilton" ♪ first time i'm thinking past tomorrow! ♪ and i'm not throwing away my shot! >> rose: "my shot" is the show's anthem as hamilton arrives in new york city during the american revolution and sees his opportunity. >> cast: ♪ rise up! rise up, take a shot ♪ take a shot, not throwing away my shot! ♪ ♪ >> lin-manuel miranda: it took me a year to write "my shot," which is "hamilton"'s big "i want" song. >> rose: it took you a year. >> lin-manuel miranda: yeah.
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because every couplet needed to be the best couplet i ever wrote. that's how... that's how seriously i was taking it. >> rose: hamilton demands lots from you. >> lin-manuel miranda: yes >> rose: i mean, he is calling on your best. >> lin-manuel miranda: he's calling on my best. because he is the smartest guy in the room. so i have to write from the perspective of the smartest guy in the room when the other people are jefferson and washington and very smart guys. sir, entrust me with a command. >> rose: hamilton was front and center at nearly every major event in early american history. >> aaron burr: man, the man is non-stop! >> rose: he never became president, but had a bigger impact than many who did. >> george washington: let me tell you what i wished i had known. >> rose: his mentor was george washington, played here by chris jackson, who plucked hamilton out of the ranks and relied on him for 20 years. >> thomas jefferson: ♪ so what did i miss? ♪ what did i miss? >> rose: daveed diggs originated the role of thomas jefferson, hamilton's primary political opponent.
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>> jefferson: ♪ i've been in paris meeting lots of different ♪ ladies. i guess i basically missed the ♪ late '80s. >> hamilton: ♪ the bullets out your gun. ♪ the bullets out your gun. >> rose: the show reflects miranda's broad musical taste, but hip hop and rap define it. your music is hip hop. your music is rap. >> lin-manuel miranda: yes. and i also believe that form is uniquely suited to tell hamilton's story. because it has more words per measure than any other musical genre. it has rhythm and it has density. and if hamilton had anything in his writings, it was this density. >> angelica schyuler: ♪ i'm a girl in a world in which ♪ my only job is to marry rich ♪ my father has no sons, so i'm the one who has to social climb ♪ for one, so i'm the oldest and the wittiest ♪ and the gossip in new york city is insidious... >> rose: miranda wrote this for hamilton's sister-in-law, angelica schyuler, played by renee-elise goldsberry. >> schyuler: and we just happen to be in the greatest city in the world! >> rose: in "hamilton," women
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get equal time. >> schuyler sisters: ♪ work! work! ♪ angelica! work! ♪ work! eliza! ♪ work! work! the schuyler sisters! >> hamilton: ♪ just you wait. alexander hamilton. >> rose: the idea to cast black and latino actors to play the founders was deliberate. miranda wanted to connect america then with america now. >> cast: ♪ you can never back down and never learn to take ♪ your time! ooohh! ♪ alexander hamilton alexander hamilton! >> rose: "hamilton" blossomed during an extended run at new york's public theater. ( fireworks ) >> rose: and was greeted with fireworks over the hudson when it opened on broadway. >> lin-manuel miranda: i come up here in the opening number. >> rose: the show has already reached the loftiest heights. in 16 months at the richard rodgers theater, "hamilton" has established itself as broadway's impossible ticket, fetching more than $1,000 a seat from ticket
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and those lucky enough to get a seat never know who might be next to them. the president of the united states. >> lin-manuel miranda: at our sixth preview. >> rose: the vice president of the united states. >> lin-manuel miranda: yes. it's put my dreams to shame. yeah. it's, it's super, super humbling and when you list those boldface names that have come to see the show, i see those as an opportunity to see the show with fresh eyes while i'm doing it. when dick cheney's sitting in the audience, i think what is he thinking when he hears the lyric, "history has its eyes on you." you know, when the president is here, what is he thinking as he sees george washington say, "i have to step down the so the country can move on." >> rose: hamilton was a complicated figure: war hero, famous philanderer, political thinker, mud-slinging politician, and the nation's first treasury secretary. >> ron chernow: he creates the first fiscal system, first monetary system, first customs
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service, first central bank, on, and on, and on. >> rose: ron chernow wrote the biography that inspired the musical and is the show's historical advisor. >> chernow: here's the story of a penniless, orphaned, immigrant kid who comes out of nowhere and sets the world on fire. and his achievements were absolutely monumental. >> rose: you say he came out of nowhere. where is nowhere? >> chernow: he was born on the island of nevis. he spent his adolescence in st. croix. his father abandoned the family when alexander was 11. his mother died when he was 13. when he came to north america he didn't know a soul. >> lin-manuel miranda: this is inwood. this is where i grew up. we were still playing dominoes on the street. >> rose: it is a story miranda could relate to. his father graduated college at 18 in puerto rico and moved to manhattan. luis miranda became a prominent political consultant. his wife luz, a psychologist. >> luis miranda: luz and i, we
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have always known that this kid was destined for greatness. >> rose: he's looking down. >> luis miranda: my only concern was always, "is his greatness gonna come with money, so he can survive forever?" >> rose: when did you see the musical talent? >> luis miranda: always. >> luz towns-miranda: from the time he was tiny-- >> luis miranda: always. ( laughs ) >> luz towns-miranda: he loved to sing. he was always creating and he loved words and songs. >> rose: at five, miranda tested into hunter college elementary, a school for highly gifted children, where he told us sometimes, he felt like he did not belong. >> lin-manuel miranda: you know, i went to a school where everyone was smarter than me. and i'm not blowing smoke, i, my, i was surrounded by genius, genius kids. what's interesting about growing up in a culture like that is you go, "all right, i got to figure out what my thing is. because i am not smarter than these kids. i am not funnier than half of them, so i better figure out what it is i want to do and work
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really hard at that. and because intellectually i'm treading water to, to be here. >> rose: so why do you think i'm sitting here talking to you and not sitting here talking to one of your classmates? >> lin-manuel miranda: because i picked a lane and i started running ahead of everybody else. so i, that's the honest answer. it was like, i was like, "all right this." >> rose: "this" was theater. he was in practically every school play. >> lin-manuel miranda: this is upstairs. this is really where we grew up. >> rose: the family didn't have a lot of money to see broadway shows. but they did collect cast albums. and miranda consumed them. camelot, follow me, the lusty month of may. >> lin-manuel miranda: lusty month of may. the, all of the wordplay. "if you may take me to the fair. you'll thrash and bash him? i'll smash and mash him?" you will, you know, "he will be trouble, he will be rubble." ( laughs ) >> rose: "if ever i would leave you." >> lin-manuel miranda: "it would not be in springtime, knowing how in spring i'm bewitched by you so." >> rose: how can you have so many songs in your head?
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>> lin-manuel miranda: because i had a lot of time on my hands. >> rose: so many songs in your head. >> lin-manuel miranda: um, yeah, well these were. >> rose: do you have room for anything else in your head? >> lin-manuel miranda: i mean, i don't know my social security number. >> rose: he graduated from wesleyan university in 2002 with a degree in theater arts. that's where he began working on a show about his old neighborhood. >> ♪ lottery ticket, just part of the routine, ♪ everybody's got a job, everybody's got a dream. >> rose: it turned into miranda's first broadway show. "in the heights" won the 2008 tony for best musical. two months later, he picked up ron chernow's book during a vacation. >> lin-manuel miranda: this is what i knew from high school. i knew hamilton died in a duel with the vice president. i knew he was on the $10 bill. but really, i was just browsing the biography section. it could have been truman. >> rose: and as you read it, what happened? >> lin-manuel miranda: i was thunderstruck. i got to the part where you know, a hurricane destroys st. croix where hamilton is living. and he writes a poem about the carnage and this poem gets him off the island.
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>> rose: you saw a rap artist in him. >> lin-manuel miranda: yes. i drew a direct line between hamilton's writing his way out of his circumstances and the rappers i had grown up adoring. it's biggie and jay-z writing about growing up in the marcy projects in brooklyn. it's eminem writing about growing up white in detroit. it's writing about that struggle and paradoxically your writing being so good it gets you out. i'm thrilled that the white house called me. >> rose: nine months after reading the book, he was invited to the white house to perform a song from "in the heights." he decided to take a risk. >> lin-manuel miranda: i am actually, working on a hip hop album. it's a concept album about the life of someone who i think embodies hip hop, treasury secretary alexander hamilton ( laughter ) you laugh?! but it's true! >> rose: so when you did it, and you look at the video now. >> lin-manuel miranda: i see a terrified young puerto rican man. >> rose: do you really? >> lin-manuel miranda: terrified. because there's the leader of the free world, newly-elected leader of the free world. his entire family. there's biden.
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♪ the $10 founding father without a father >> rose: but as he began the story, the room was mesmerized. >> lin-manuel miranda: ♪ moved in with a cousin ♪ the cousin committed suicide left him with nothing ♪ but ruined pride, something new inside, ♪ a voice saying "alex you gotta fend for yourself," ♪ he started retreatin' and readin' every treatise ♪ on the shelf there would have been nothin' ♪ left to do for someone less astute, ♪ he woulda been dead or destitute without a cent or ♪ restitution, started workin clerkin' for his late mother's ♪ landlord, tradin' sugarcane and rum and all the things he ♪ can't afford that video's a microcosm of my entire "hamilton" experience. i say, "hip hop, alexander hamilton," and everyone laughs. and then, by the end, they are not laughing. because they are in it. because they have been sucked into the story, just like i got sucked into the story. when we finally drive the british away lafayette is waiting in chesapeake bay! >> rose: miranda's gift is bringing that story to today's audiences, reminding them whom to thank for building this nation.
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>> hamilton: how you say, "no sweat!" we are finally on the field. we have had quite a run. >> lafayette: immigrants. >> hamilton/lafayette: we get the job done. >> lin-manuel miranda: there's a lot of ways in, right? if you're scared of hip hop or you thought hip hop was not music for you, we are going to give you king george who sings a british-invasion-style song from the '60s. >> rose: that's a showstopper too. >> lin-manuel miranda: it's a showstopper. and it's a breath. >> king george iii: you say, the price of my love is not a price that you're willing to pay. >> rose: the british king, played here by jonathan groff, scoffs at the colonists and european immigrants trying to go it alone. >> king george iii: ♪ you'll be back ♪ soon you'll see you'll remember you belong to me ♪ you'll be back time will tell ♪ you remember that i served you well ♪ oceans rise empires fall ♪ we have seen each other
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through it all! >> lin-manuel miranda: what's interesting about that role, and i didn't even really anticipate it when i was writing it, the king becomes the audience's surrogate. as they watch this country being formed in front of their eyes, and the king goes, "wait. you are really going to keep changing leaders? wait. what are you gonna do now the war is over?" >> rose: or you're going to come back. >> lin-manuel miranda: oh, you will be back. ( laughter ) he speaks to the country as if it was a girlfriend he didn't treat well. >> king george iii: ♪ 'cuz when push ♪ comes to shove ♪ i will kill your friends and family ♪ to remind you of my love. da da da dat da da da ♪ da da ya da da dat da ya da >> lin-manuel miranda: i think the secret sauce of this show is that i can't believe this story is true. it's such an improbable and amazing story and i learned about it while i was writing it.
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and i think that enthusiasm is baked into the recipe. >> rose: some of the other cast members, and the story of the duel that ended hamilton's life, when we come back. >> this cbs sports update is brought to you by ford division. i'm james brown. from the nfl today with a will be ahead to week 17, in the league we have a full plate of double-header action next sunday on cbs. among our early game, new england faces miami or houston batted ls tennessee. later it's a pair of a.f.c. west matchups as kansas city challenges san diego or oakland takes on denver. note that games and times are subject to change. for more sports news and information, go to of the season on ford, for the best deas america's most awarded brand. with the most 5-star ratings...
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>> rose: a year and a half ago, the broadway musical "hamilton" struck like a cultural earthquake, shaking up the worlds of theater, music and american history all at the same time. it even seems to have altered
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our money, after the treasury department scrapped plans to remove alexander hamilton's face from the $10 bill. the man responsible is lin- manuel miranda, who, along with the rest of the original cast, has moved on while the show lives on. in this encore presentation of our story on the musical, we'll show you how miranda took stories from history and made them accessible to today's audience. >> lin-manuel miranda: i think we take great pains to knock all these guys off their pedestals. >> rose: yeah you do. >> lin-manuel miranda: this is washington impatient and yelling, "are these men with which i am to defend america?" which he did as he was fleeing new york. that's a quote. this is jefferson and hamilton squabbling. >> george washington: the issue on the table! >> rose: the tenor of their politics will sound familiar too. hamilton's debate with jefferson over how to pay off the revolutionary war debt was so intense, miranda stages it as a rap battle. >> washington: are you ready for a cabinet meeting? >> rose: with washington as
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referee. >> thomas jefferson: ♪ in virginia, we plant seeds in the ♪ ground. we create. ♪ you just want to move our money around. ♪ this financial plan is an outrageous demand and it's too ♪ many damn pages for any man to understand ♪ stand with me in the land of the free ♪ pray to god we never see hamilton's candidacy ♪ look! when britain taxed our tea, ♪ we got frisky imagine what's gonna happen when ♪ you try to tax our whiskey >> washington: thank you, secretary jefferson! >> alexander hamilton: ♪ thomas, that was a real nice ♪ declaration welcome to the present, ♪ we're running a real nation would you like to join us, ♪ or stay mellow, doing whatever the hell it is ♪ you do in monticello a civics lesson from a slaver, ♪ hey neighbor your debts are paid because you ♪ don't pay for labor'i we plant seeds in the south ♪ we create!' keep ranting ♪ we know who's really doing the planting!! >> rose: hamilton's combative nature made him monumental enemies including presidents adams, jefferson, madison and monroe. all downplayed hamilton's
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achievements and diminished his legacy. the only one to fare worse in the eyes of history was hamilton's killer, vice president aaron burr. miranda gives him a starring role. burr becomes your narrator? >> lin-manuel miranda: yes. >> rose: because you need what? >> lin-manuel miranda: well, one, i need balance. hamilton would be happy to narrate his own story. >> rose: in paragraphs and paragraphs. >> lin-manuel miranda: in paragraphs and paragraphs. and also, burr is the mirror image of hamilton. he's also orphaned at a young age. speeds through college. speeds through princeton in two years. starts at 13. age 13. >> rose: just as smart as hamilton? >> lin-manuel miranda: just as smart as hamilton. but every time hamilton says go, burr says stop. he's just cautious >> aaron burr: hamilton doesn't hesitate. >> rose: burr was originally played by leslie odom, jr. >> burr: ♪ takes and he takes and he takes ♪ and he keeps winning anyway changes the game ♪ plays and raises the stakes and if there's a reason ♪ he seems to thrive and so few
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survive ♪ then goddamit i'm willing to wait for it! ♪ i'm willing to wait for it! >> rose: miranda explores the rivalry between burr and hamilton. from friends, to competitors, to political rivals. in one song, they finally become enemies. >> burr: ♪ i, i wanna be in the room where it happens ♪ the room where it happens >> lin-manuel miranda: "room where it happens" was the toughest jigsaw puzzle i've ever done. >> rose: a puzzle explaining how hamilton, jefferson and madison made a backroom deal to move the u.s. capital from new york city to washington d.c. in 1790. in the musical, this becomes the final straw for the man left out. >> burr: ♪ i've gotta be, i've got to be, in the room ♪ the big old room! the art of the compromise ♪ hold your nose and close your eyes >> lin-manuel miranda: i'm both trying to explain this very
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complicated compromise that happened behind closed doors, and what makes it exciting in the context of our story is we're telling it from the perspective of the one guy who wasn't there: aaron burr. he says, "these guys just traded away the capitol of our country in exchange for an unprecedented, financial plan. it all happened over a dinner that none of us were at. none of us had any say in the decision." >> rose: the room where it happens. >> lin-manuel miranda: the room where it happens. >> burr & ensemble: ♪ i've got to be in the room where it ♪ happened, the room where it happened ♪ i gotta be i gotta be ♪ in the rooooomm! click! ♪ boom! >> rose: for years, the story of burr and hamilton was hidden away in places like this, the new york historical society library. it holds many of their original writings.
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this is where historian ron chernow researched the biography that inspired miranda. >> ron chernow: lin-manuel miranda, i think, was smart enough to know that the best way to dramatize this story was to stick as close to the facts as possible. you want violence? there's violence in the story. you want sex? there's sex in the story. >> rose: you want power, there's power in the story? >> chernow: you want power in the story. this has all of the ingredients. >> rose: including the story of hamilton's political downfall. it began with a year-long affair with a young woman named maria reynolds. it turned into the nation's first bona fide sex scandal. >> chernow: i think that what makes the whole story so bizarre and unbelievable is that hamilton ended up paying blackmail money to mr. reynolds. and this at a time when hamilton was not just the treasury secretary, but he was effectively, like, the prime minister of washington's government. so he was the most powerful man in the government. >> rose: when he was exposed, hamilton did something no one expected: he confessed everything.
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>> chernow: he wrote a 95-page pamphlet when even his closest friends thought that a delicately-worded paragraph or two would have done the trick. >> rose: i apologize, i made a mistake. >> chernow: and that would have done it. >> jefferson & madison: ♪ alexander hamilton had a torrid affair ♪ and he wrote about it down right there! ♪ highlights! >> rose: in the show, miranda uses hamilton's own words from what became known as "the reynold's pamphlet." >> jefferson & madison & burr: ♪ i had frequent meetings with her ♪ most of them at my own house at his own house! ♪ at his own house! damn! >> rose: the scandal was one big reasonhere was never a "president" hamilton. >> jefferson & madison & burr: ♪ never gonna be president now ain't never gonna be president ♪ now that's one less thing to worry ♪ about! >> leslie odom jr: he's made these dead white guys make sense to a bunch of, you know, black and brown people. he's made them make sense in the context of our time with our music.
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>> rose: we spoke last fall with some of miranda's most important collaborators: former cast- members leslie odom, jr.; renee elise goldsberry; daveed diggs; philippa soo; and chris jackson. what is it that connects? what are you hearing? what is it that's resonating in these audiences? >> christopher jackson: there's so many different things happening in this story that it's almost impossible to peg, i think, it's just the music, or it's just the movement, or it's the lights, or it's the staging. and it could be any number of those things. or all of those things. >> rose: these are good female roles too, aren't they. >> renee elise goldsberry: yes, they are. one of the things that's exciting to me about playing angelica schuyler and feeling so powerful and knowing the time that we live in with hilary running for president. we get to show who the founding mothers are and what they did. they were not just sewing flags. they were actually the muse, like angelica schuyler was to jefferson and to hamilton. >> rose: daveed, you said it gives you something you didn't have before.
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ownership of your own history. >> daveed diggs: yeah, yeah. i mean, this is the only time i've ever felt particularly american, is in the last, like, eight months that i've been working on this. >> rose: "hamilton" came back to life at a time when politics and immigration are the hottest topics in america, but it was miranda's writing that has made it a juggernaut. when you write, i mean i have been told you write, and if it's sad, tears come to your eyes. you're in the moment to express yourself. >> lin-manuel miranda: yeah. i think of acting and writing as pretty much the same thing. it's all about getting inside the skin of your characters, and seeing where they are, and knowing how they've grown up. you have to know all this, like, in your bones, what they've come up against, who they are. and then you just start talking as them. and you write until the rust comes out of the faucet and it's clear water. and you write down the clear water. >> rose: because the clear water is the perfection at the end of this. >> lin-manuel miranda: well, it's the stuff that feels true. >> chernow: the bullet hit him
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actually on the right side. >> rose: most people already know how the story of alexander hamilton ends. he died in 1804 in a duel with aaron burr in weehawkin, new jersey. by then, burr was a lame duck vice president. hamilton, just shy of his 50th birthday, was practicing law. how could that happen? >> chernow: dueling revolved around honor. you were protecting your honor. >> rose: but here are two men, they're not ordinary politicians? they have a lot to lose? >> chernow: here were two politicians with their careers in decline who thought that they would establish their courage and manhood on the dueling ground. burr was feeling very, very frustrated. it seemed like at every turn alexander hamilton was there, you know, blocking his path. >> lin-manuel miranda: he writes in a letter before the duel. he said "there was no way this could have been avoided. we have been circling each other for a while. it was always going to come to this." >> rose: this was going to happen. >> lin-manuel miranda: this was going to be happen. they are fundamentally different men. and they run in concentric
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circles until they meet. >> tommy kail: and everything around them is moving. >> rose: miranda and director tommy kail staged the intensifying rivalry between the two men. ahhh. >> lin-manuel miranda: yeah, it's pretty cool, right? >> rose: it's really cool. the turntable was essential. >> kail: it allows the propulsion of the show to continue, to continue this insistence of movement that hamilton had in his life. >> hamitlon: i imagine death so much it feels more like a memory. >> rose: many historians including chernow believe hamilton deliberately fired into the air, throwing away his shot. >> wait!!! >> rose: it is a fatal miscalculation. >> burr: ♪ i hear wailing in the streets ♪ somebody tells me you better hide ♪ they say angelica and eliza were both by his side when he ♪ died >> lin-manuel miranda: here's the thing about hamilton.
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i think hamilton was ready to die from the time he was 14 years old. i think what he has is what i have, which is that thing of, "tomorrow's not promised. i got to get as much done as i can." ( clapping ) >> rose: it's not only good acting. it's not only good music. people are saying it's transformative. >> lin-manuel miranda: it's certainly changed my life. but i think it's because when great people cross our path, and i'm talking about hamilton here, it forces us to reckon with what we're doing with our lives, you know? at my age, hamilton was treasury secretary and creating our financial system from scratch. >> rose: and building a country? >> lin-manuel miranda: yeah. i wrote two plays. >> ♪ i'm not throwing away my shot >> the making of the "hamilton" cast album. go to sponsored by pfizer. (my hero zero by lemonheads)
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>> whitaker: now, an update to one more music story, one we called "little jazz man." we first met jazz piano phenom joey alexander as a 12-year-old almost a year ago. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ he was the youngest person ever nominated for two grammy awards.
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this year, joey has again been nominated for a grammy, this time for "best improvised jazz solo" for his recording of "countdown." the awards show will be broadcast in february here on cbs. i'm bill whitaker. merry christmas and happy chanukah. we'll be back new year's night with another edition of "60 minutes."
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asmy family tree,ing i discovered a woman named marianne gaspard... it was her french name. then she came to louisiana as a slave. i became curious where in africa she was from. so i took the ancestry dna test to find out more about my african roots. the ancestry dna results were really specific. they told me all of these places in west africa. i feel really proud of my lineage, and i feel really proud of my ancestry. ancestry has many paths to discovering your story, get started for free at
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announcer: lucille ball and desi arnaz... inthe new i love lucy christmas special. (theme song playing) with vivian vance and william frawley. featuring the fully colorized classic christmas episode and "lucy gets in pictures." and now, i love lucy. how's it here, honey? over to the left a little. no, no, the other way. no, i want it in the middle so the mantel won't look lopsided. santa claus doesn't care if the mantel looks lopsided. oh, well. there you are, partner. thank you, daddy. you're welcome. now, when you get up in the morning, honey, santa claus is going to have that chock-full of goodies. yes, sir.


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