“Hamilton” Creator Puts Focus on Arts in Latest Puerto Rico Initiative

Lin-Manuel Miranda is launching a fund to help support and rebuild Puerto Rico's arts organizations. Miranda has raised tens of millions in aid since Hurricane Maria hit the territory last fall.

As Puerto Rico has made its slow recovery from the devastation wrought by Hurricane Maria, one major star of Puerto Rican heritage has been a leading advocate for the territory.

Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda has raised an estimated $30 million for relief efforts since the storm hit last fall, according to the Washington Post. Now, he’ll add to that total with a new initiative: a nonprofit fund to support the arts on the island.

This week, Miranda unveiled the Flamboyan Arts Fund, which will help rebuild artistic institutions that fell by the wayside due to the storm. According to the Associated Press, Miranda plans to donate to the fund all of the proceeds when his Broadway blockbuster plays in Puerto Rico in January. His aim: to build the fund to $15 million in the coming years.

“The goal wasn’t just artistic satisfaction, but how can we leave Puerto Rico a little better than we found it,” Miranda said in a press conference.

The fund has already handed out about $4 million to a variety of programs, including a dance school, an art education program, a local theater company, the Puerto Rico Museum of Art, and the Theater of the University of Puerto Rico.

On Twitter, Miranda noted that many artists have continued to work in Puerto Rico, despite challenges posed by the recession that preceded the hurricane and the devastation that followed it.

“Many artists and arts organizations on the island are under-resourced, others are barely making it, but they do what they can to survive, in spite of the economic situation in Puerto Rico before and after Hurricane Maria,” he wrote in the tweeted message.

Almost a year after the storm, relief efforts have begun to focus on long-term resilience. A recent report from the Resilient Puerto Rico Advisory Commission outlined a variety of ideas. Miranda referred to the report in his tweet on Sunday.

(Disney ABC Television Group/Flickr)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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