Right hand man: De Blasio lauds Lin-Manuel Miranda for helping Broadway stay alive

Hamilton needs no introduction, nor does its creator. It has become a Broadway staple and hailed as the artistic chariot which will bring the masses back to New York City for its recovery.

On Oct. 26, Mayor Bill de Blasio joined Lin-Manuel Miranda in Midtown to honor the hit show’s creator and his efforts to put Broadway back in the narrative after months of pandemic-related closure.

With the road to back normalcy being paved with the opening of more Broadway shows this fall, Mayor de Blasio also rejoiced over multiple comeback stories — the first of which was the reopening of the Drama Book Shop located on 266 West 39th St. The business which had been in operation since 1917 shuttered its doors one century later in 2017.

However, the Drama Book Shop was one of the few storefronts which managed to return after the onslaught of the deadly virus at a different location on June 10, 2021, thanks to its new co-owner Miranda himself.

Lin-Manuel Miranda speaks at the Drama Book Shop on Oct. 26. Photo by Dean Moses

Selling a variety of plays in paper form, including those penned by Miranda, de Blasio saw it as the perfect location to honor the comeback story of both the store and Broadway which he attributes to the famous playwright.

“We are the great city of arts and culture, we are a city of creativity, we are a city of scribers and believers and the fact that this place has come back to — resurrected to keep that tradition alive is incredibly beautiful, ” Mayor Bill de Blasio said standing beside Miranda surrounded by books. 

Honoring the contributions Miranda has made to the arts, the mayor presented the Hamilton creator with a proclamation dubbing Oct. 26 Drama Book Shop Day. 

“Thank you, Mayor de Blasio. I’m incredibly proud on behalf of me and my co-owners to accept this proclamation. Places like Drama Book Shop are the backbone of what makes New York City so special. I used to sit on the floor of the old drama bookshop back in its old location when I was in high school,” Miranda explained. ”Come stop by for some coffee and get a book. When I could not afford Broadway tickets, I would sit on the floor of the drama bookshop and read the librettos and listen to the scores. I welcome you to utilize this space as a resource to gather and to dream.”

Mayor Bill do Blasio embraces Lin-Manuel Miranda. Photo by Dean Moses

The mayor echoed these sentiments, urging New Yorkers to spend their money at mom-and-pop shops as the holidays approach. Attempting to put his money where his mouth is, de Blasio went shopping in the store with Miranda as his guide looking for an early gift for his son, Dante de Blasio. Miranda stacked book after book into the city official’s arms, toping it off by signing one of his own.

Lin-Manuel Miranda points out some recommended reads. Photo by Dean Moses
Lin-Manuel Miranda signs a book for the mayor. Photo by Dean Moses