WATCH: Lin-Manuel Miranda Gives Commencement Address at Penn
At the start of his speech, Lin-Manuel Miranda apologized for mentioning Philadelphia just once in the smash hit musical Hamilton — “one blink-and-you’ll-miss-it Liberty Bell reference,” he called it. He also apologized, in character as Alexander Hamilton, for advocating to move the nation’s capital from Philadelphia to Washington, D.C.
“But take the long view, Motownphilly,” Miranda said. “Who really won that deal in the end? Look at D.C.: It’s synonymous with institutional dysfunction, partisan infighting and political gridlock. You are known as the birthplace of Louisa May Alcott, Rocky Balboa, Boyz II Men, Betsy Ross, Will Smith, Isaac Asimov, Tina Fey, cheesesteaks and you can have scrapple, soft pretzels and Wawa hoagies any time you want.
“You win Philly! You win every time! Water ice.”
Miranda also referenced the Cosi at 4th and Chestnut streets when mentioning where Hamilton lived during his time in the city. Sure, why not?
Miranda didn’t really rap much during his commencement address, but he was introduced by a rhyming speech by Penn provost Vincent Price (no relation).
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