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The Disney+ release of Hamilton resulted in millions more people than had ever actually seen the Broadway show finally having the chance to experience it all. And with that, came an influx of discussion and debate on everything from the historical accuracy of the story to the minor details that were almost hidden within the story. However, one of the bigger topics has been the show's literal "last gasp." The play ends with Eliza Hamilton standing center stage and letting out an audible cry before the lights go down. Nobody is quite sure what this moment is supposed to mean, but Lin-Manuel Miranda just made it clear that one popular theory, or at least part of it, is not the case.
One of the major theories is that in the final moment of Hamilton, Eliza actually looks out and sees the audience watching the play itself, and is so overwhelmed by the fact that the story has survived that she breaks down. A user on TikTok recently broke down this theory while watching the end of the play.
Eliza Hamilton, played by Philipa Soo in the original production of Hamilton that was filmed for Disney+, takes center stage at the end of the show as she was the person responsible for making sure that the legacy of Alexander Hamilton survived the test of time. The final song takes us through 50 years of her life and all the things she did not just for the country but for her husband. This has ultimately culminated in the play Hamilton itself, which might not exist had Eliza Hamilton not done all the things she did.
And so, as this version of the theory goes, in the end, Lin-Manuel Miranda, not in character as Alexander, but as the creator of Hamilton, is the one to show Eliza that the story has lived on. This last piece of the puzzle, according to the creator himself, is not the case. Lin-Manuel Miranda posted the theory to Twitter and while he loves that people are analyzing the end, he also makes it clear that at no point on stage is he not playing the role of Alexander Hamilton.
It doesn't necessarily mean that the rest of the theory doesn't hold up. The fourth wall breaking moment, if that's what it is, isn't entirely dependent on Lin-Manuel Miranda breaking character, so the entire theory isn't dead, but this part seemingly is.
What's clear is that, while the theories are a lot of fun and Lin-Manuel Miranda wants to encourage them, the answer is that there isn't really an answer. Philipa Soo has talked about how her own interpretation of the moment actually changed over the course of the show depending on how she was feeling. Miranda seems to indicate something similar here, by remarking that the others who played the role of Hamilton in the early days may have handled this scene in their own unique ways which could give different context to the moment