D211 Post: Students Get Opportunity to See Hamilton in Chicago


Students from Palatine High School show their playbills as they await the start of the musical Hamilton.

Nearly 200 students from Hoffman Estates and Palatine High Schools had the unique opportunity to see the hit musical Hamilton at the CIBC Theater in Chicago thanks to a grant from the Gilder Leherman Institute of American History.

            As part of the grant application social studies students from the schools had to create a presentation on historic individuals from early American history, using primary sources as part of their research.

            “After their research, the students had to create a poem, scene, monologue, or rap about the person they chose,” said Liza Sullivan, a social studies teacher at Palatine High School.

            Sullivan said the top 100 projects from her classes were selected to attend the performance.

            Through the grant, a batch of tickets were provided to the schools at a cost of $10 each.  As part of their theater trip, students started the day with a question and answer session with members of the Hamilton cast.  Following the Q&A, students and staff enjoyed lunch at the Palmer House before returning to the theater for a matinee performance of the Tony Award winning musical.

Cast members from the musical Hamilton answer students questions prior to a matinee performance at the CIBC in Chicago. (Photo courtesy of Hoffman Estates High School)

            Hoffman Estates High School Social Studies department chair Kevin Mallon said he was glad to hear the cast members talk about how much hard work was involved in their performance.

            “They talked to the students about needing dedication and drive to succeed on stage, which is something we also try to instill in the students,” he said.

Students from Hoffman Estates High School eat lunch at the Palmer House in Chicago before attending a matinee performance of Hamilton at the CIBC Theater.

            Sullivan said the experience was a first for many of her students.

            “The students were very excited,” she said.  “Some of them had never seen a musical in Chicago like this before.  It was such a great experience.”