RICHMOND, Va. — The cast of hit Broadway musical Hamilton were deeply uncomfortable upon their arrival in Richmond as they realized they would be staying at the stately Jefferson Hotel for the length of their trip.
RELATED (article continued below):
- Rotunda Statue of Thomas Jefferson to Be Replaced by Statue of Tony Bennett
- J.E.B. Stuart Statue Tired of Other Monuments Getting All the Attention, Spray-Paint
- Mayor Levar Stoney Proposes Moving Monument Avenue, Leave Monuments Behind
The musical—which swept the nation in 2016 among both insufferable theater nerds and people who think liking ‘The West Wing’ is an adequate substitute for an informed political outlook—prominently features the storied rivalry between the two great founding fathers, Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson. However, no one could have predicted that the statesmen’s personal and political quarrel would be resurrected in the real world in grand, eponymous fashion.
Franklin Hudgins, the concierge for the Jefferson Hotel, recounted the vague sense of mutual unease engendered by the cast’s arrival. “It is mandatory that each employee of the hotel trace his lineage back to Mr. Jefferson himself which, let’s be honest, was not difficult due to Mr. Jefferson’s fondness for his…uh…’employees,’” said Hudgins. “Because of this, things have been more uncomfortable than that one time a poor person escaped into the main lobby.”
The transient cast reported unbearable conditions at the Jefferson, having been offered nothing but incredibly rich French cuisine for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. “OK, so Jefferson was a Francophile, I get that,” cast member Andrew Chappelle said. “But try explaining the 1,500 calorie butter-laden meals to our costume department. I have 12 different form-fitting costumes for eight different parts, and my ass can’t fit into any of them now!”
The aggrieved performers retaliated by selling the hotel’s famous alligator statues to a Motel 6 outside of Baton Rouge in what they called “The Louisiana Refund,” among other roguish pranks.
“Joseph Morales, who plays Hamilton, would call down to the front desk asking if Sally Hemmings was in the Jefferson,” said ensemble cast member Hope Easterbrook. “And when the clerk said ‘No,’ he’d be like ‘Oh, that’s right, it was the other way around’ and then hang up.”
Things came to a head, however, when Jeffrey Jefferson, Thomas Jefferson’s great great great great grand-nephew and part owner of the hotel, challenged Morales to a duel in an act that was criticized as “too soon” by onlookers. The parties had to be separated before they came to blows and the duel was canceled, as it conflicted with the Berkowitz bat mitzvah being celebrated down the hall.
Tensions eventually subsided as the hotel suffered from a lack of clientele frightened off by the increasingly historically-inaccurate feud. The parties eventually came to an uneasy truce brokered by Mount Vernon’s George Washington impersonator, who was Ubered in for the parlay.
Hotel management expects similar unrest when the John Adams Appreciation Society comes to town for their annual meeting later this month.
Be sure to check out our online store before you leave.