“George Washington” says "MSU made it OK to be who I am”

Nov 1, 2017

Southfield native and MSU alumnus Jonathan Kirkland is playing George Washington in the Chicago production of Hamilton. He recently received a distinguished young alumnus award from his alma mater.


“It’s such an honor to know that a place that helped groom me and a place that helped cultivate who I really am has followed my career and what I’ve done.” He says he wouldn’t be in Hamilton today if not for his time at MSU.

He loves the family feel at MSU. “And what MSU did for me specifically was make it OK to be who I am.”

Kirkland says it’s a blessing to be in Hamilton “because I get to do work that is transformative, monumental, and transcendent. And furthermore, if you take away the societal and political stuff, I’m having a good time. I love my job, and I love to do what I do.

“My prayer for whoever comes to our show and has any disdain or hate or anger or any kind of malice in their heart is that they’ll walk away from our show filled with love. Ultimately, I hope people are entertained, that they get what they paid for, and hopefully they walk out with a little perspective.”

MSU Today airs Sunday afternoons at 4:00 on 94.5 FM and AM 870.