The creator of Broadway smash “Hamilton,” Lin-Manuel Miranda has been keeping a tight schedule while shooting the “Mary Poppins” sequel in London. The almost-EGOT (missing the Oscar because of some sappy song from “La La Land”) has been busy creating Spotify playlists and working on his next Broadway hit, a musical about the life of Miami rapper Armando Christian Pérez, aka Pitbull.
“The project is going to be a musical journey through Pitbull’s life and the many obstacles he had to overcome to make it to the top of the rap game,” says Miranda. The first act will cover Pérez’s life as the child of Cuban immigrants in Miami, where he would recite poetry by José Martí while listening to the booty music of Miami bass kings 2 Live Crew. The second act will explore some of the most poignant themes Pitbull ponders in his music, among them: Does he want to be just a millionaire or a billionaire? Is that girl going to bring her friend to his private jet? How tight should your pants be before you cuff them at the ankles.
One of the challenges of the production is finding the right actor to play Pitbull. Says Perez, “I don’t know if y’all know this, but I used to have a lot of hair. So this person has to have hair for, like, all of Act I. Then they gotta be bald for the rest of the show.”
Miranda also fears that he won’t be able to incorporate all of Pitbull’s songbook properly. “I need to make sure we hit all the right notes; from the exuberance Armando felt growing up around so many nice Miami butts in ‘Culo!’ to his sexual awakening at the lover’s motels of Eighth Street in ‘Hotel Room Service’ to whatever it was he was rapping about in that World Cup song.”
The main obstacle Miranda is having is clearing the many samples that Pitbull’s songbook incorporates. Pitbull is not worried. “I have a good lawyer.”
Another reason he’s not worried? Because April Fools’ Day!