'In the Heights' Producer Lin-Manuel Miranda's Comedic Hip-Hop Improv Show, 'Freestyle Love Supreme' Brings the Rhythm and the Rhyme to Pivot TV Series
Tony and Grammy Award-winning, "In the Heights" composer-lyricist Lin-Manuel Miranda knows how to grab the audience's attention, bring forth stellar performances and pay homage to Washington Heights.
Once again, he's is taking it back to the streets of 'The Heights,' but this time he's doing it through Pivot's new TV series, "Freestyle Love Supreme," the on-screen version of Miranda's popular stage show featuring freestyle rap.
Miranda joined forces with 'In The Heights' co-creator, Thomas Kail to create "Freestyle Love Supreme," the "high-energy, comedic hip-hop improv show," which made its television debut on Pivot as an original special, which was picked up for 10 half-hour episodes.
In the latest "Freestyle Love Surpreme" episode, which airs Friday, Oct. 24 at 10:30p ET/PT, Miranda walks around his neighborhood asking the residents of Washington Heights "what it means to be a man." He gets some pretty interesting and funny comments and his responses are classic.
Dubbed "Masters in the art of Freestyle rhyme," by The New York Times, "Freestyle Love Supreme" takes "cues from the audience into instantaneous riffs and fully realized musical numbers."
In addition to Miranda, who is also the co-composer/co-lyricist of the Tony Award-nominated Broadway's "Bring it On: The Musical," the "Freestyle Love Supreme" team includes: Utkarsh Ambudkar, Anthony Veneziale, Chris Sullivan, Bill Sherman, Arthur Lewis, and special guests. The live portions of the series will film at the famous Ars Nova Theater in Manhattan.
"It's kind of exciting because we've been on the music slash comedy scene for a really long time. The challenge has always been, well, they're amazing live, but how on earth do you translate that to TV? The TV creates a divide. We went down the road with Adult Swim to do a scripted pilot, and it was very funny. It was a different thing. What we really tried to do with Pivot was translate the live experience the best we can," he explained to Entertainment Weekly.
"Freestyle Love Supreme" was conceived by Anthony Veneziale and Thomas Kail. The series is executive produced by Anthony Veneziale, Thomas Kail, Jon Steingart and Jill Furman for Ars Nova, and Ryan McFaul. Jeff Skoll and Christy Spitzer serve as executive producers for Pivot, according to its official website.
The group has performed at the Edinburgh International Fringe Festival, the HBO US Comedy Arts Festival, the Melbourne Comedy Festival, Paramount Comedy UK and the Just For Laughs Festival in Montreal. FLS also travels to colleges across the country, including gigs at Hamilton College, Steven's Technical Institute, Montclair State University and Kenyon College.
Latin Post caught up with Miranda at the Vanidades Awards last month where he had the honor of presenting the legendary Rita Moreno with the Iconic Woman of Style 2014/Lifetime Achievement Award. Miranda gushed over Moreno's body of work, including the impact that "West Side Story" made on him as a child as well as his latest project.
"My next musical is called 'Hamilton,' and were opening up at the Public in January," Miranda told Latin Post.
Check out an exclusive clip from "Freestyle Love Surpreme" lastest episode, which airs Friday, Oct. 24 at 10:30p ET/PT. Miranda walks around his neighborhood asking the residents of Washington Heights "what it means to be a man," and then freestyles a rap at the end.
What do you think it means to be a man?
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