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"Hamilton" controversy should drive more viewers to WNED-TV Thanksgiving repeat

I received a Ticketmaster alert around midnight Monday advising me tickets to the sold-out Broadway musical “Hamilton” had been released and all I had to do was tap on something to see what was available.

So I tapped and discovered the tickets available for Wednesday’s 2 p.m. performance were on the resale market and “only” cost between $737 and $1,100.

In other words, I’m going to have to be content with listening to the original cast recording of “Hamilton” a little longer. All right, a lot longer.

The controversy surrounding cast member Brandon Victor Dixon’s remarks to  Mike Pence after the Vice President-elect attended the show clearly isn’t going to damage the Broadway hit at the box office any time soon.

If anything, it most likely will mean you’ll have to be a member of President-elect Donald Trump’s administration to get a seat in the Richard Rodgers Theater.

Which brings me to this reminder: At 9:30 Thanksgiving night, WNED-TV is repeating the PBS production of the 90-minute documentary, “Hamilton’s America,” that follows the creation of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s hit musical and includes performances of many of the songs.

[PBS special brings 'Hamilton's America' to life]

I’d be remiss if I didn’t add my two cents to the “Hamilton” controversy surrounding Dixon’s remarks and President-elect Trump’s Twitter blasting of the lecture of Pence and calling it harassment.

Actually, I added my two cents in two tweets over the weekend.

Here’s the first one tweeted Saturday: “Message was delivered with class and Pence received it with class. Trump should invite cast to perform at the inauguration.”

Pence stayed classy, subsequently saying he wasn’t offended by Dixon’s remarks.

My second tweet concerned Channel 2’s editing of Dixon’s remarks. I’m not sure if the station news department did the editing or if it was done by its network, NBC. But the part that aired on Channel 2 skipped the gracious beginning when Dixon thanked Pence for coming and instead went right into the lecture about the “alarm and anxiety” some Americans in our diverse nation have over whether the Trump presidency will protect them.

I tweeted: “Channel 2’s editing of the ‘Hamilton’ clip was unfair and out of context. Needed to show the beginning.”

On Sunday night, a good friend who watched the Channel 2 clip told me that he thought the cast member speaking shouldn’t have just lectured Pence. He thought he should have been more gracious.

Then I told him about the gracious opening part, in which Dixon said "we truly thank you for joining us,” was edited out, proving my point: Editing matters.

In fairness, Channel 2 wasn’t alone in trying to save a few seconds in editing it.

On Monday, the CBS morning program edited out the gracious part in the clip it showed before interviewing Dixon about the controversy.

If you want to hear Dixon’s unedited 83-second message, you should head to the internet to see it in its entirety before judging it.

Perhaps the smartest thing I heard about the controversy came while listening Tuesday to New York Times columnist and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Thomas Friedman during an interview on NPR.

Friedman said it would have been so much better if, instead of anger, Trump had reacted to the “Hamilton” lecture with class by saying he heard it and added something on the order of “don’t worry, I have your back” to the diverse Americans who are worried or scared about his presidency.

One final tweet: I was a little late to the party Tuesday afternoon when I turned on CNN to see President Obama honoring 21 incredible people with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

But President Obama’s brief summary of the accomplishments of such stars as Lorne Michaels, Tom Hanks, Robert DeNiro, Bruce Springtseen, Ellen DeGeneres, Robert Redford, Michael Jordan, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Vince Scully and several other amazing honorees was so entertaining that I immediately tweeted: “Watching President Obama name Medal of Freedom honorees is best hour of TV this month.”

“Today” co-host Matt Lauer practically seconded that opinion Wednesday on the NBC morning program after some brief clips were shown.

“It was astonishing,” said Lauer. “Hats off to President Obama, who made it so poignant, emotional and funny.”

Co-host Savannah Guthrie added viewers should “look it up online and watch the whole thing.”

Great advice. If you do that, you probably won’t see a more entertaining program over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend no matter what you choose to binge watch.

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