Canberra performer and musician Kirrah Amosa is taking her next big step in show business by leaping into three roles as a standby cast member in the award-winning musical Hamilton which begins in Sydney this month.
Hamilton is the story of America’s founding father Alexander Hamilton, and has been brought to Australia for the first time.
The musical features a score that blends hip-hop, jazz, R&B and Broadway. In America, it created a revolutionary moment in theatre through its profound impact on culture, politics and education.
Kirrah was chosen as a standby for the female lead role of Eliza Hamilton, as well as a standby for the roles of Angelica Schuyler and Peggy/Maria.
Kirrah told Region Media this week that being able to jump into multiple roles at a moment’s notice was an amazing opportunity.
“Getting this role has been impeccable timing especially with COVID as no one has really been able to perform,” she said.
“To now be able to go into a room full of people and do what I’ve worked all my life to achieve makes me feel very grateful.
“I feel like I’m at maximum capacity but have just been staying alert with the roles by watching and writing down everything I see and hear while also helping the other amazing ladies when I see something I think they should know.
“It’s an amazing experience but also a lot more work than I thought it would be as I’m really taking on three roles at once.”
For Kirrah, music and performing runs in her family. Her father was a promising musician until he chose family over career. Kirrah’s earliest memory is her dad singing and from an early age knew she had a talent for music.
Four years ago, Kirrah landed a role in the musical The Bodyguard, based on the 1992 movie of the same name and realised her dream could be a reality.
Kirrah, now 26, also knows the pitfalls of the industry after having been rejected by the judges of Channel Nine’s popular singing competition The Voice in June 2019.
Despite her initial hesitation to audition for the show, she was labelled as the ‘Australian Beyonce’ by the show’s producers and didn’t want to give the label air-time during her pre-audition interview. None of the four judges turned their chairs during the blind audition.
Kirrah said she has been chasing what she called her ‘Usher moment’ when someone would finally discover her talents as a singer and performer, however she feels that moment is still to come.
“I think my Usher moment is still coming. This is an incredible step towards that and it’s great to prove I can do something like this – but I still think I’ve got a lot more in me as well.”
Kirrah has also been drawn to the powerful story of Hamilton which is in its sixth week of rehearsals and has completed a full run-through of acts one and two. Rehearsals will move into the Lyric Theatre at the end of this week.
“The story is just so incredible and it’s been really emotional seeing it play out in rehearsals,” she said.
“It’s also been humbling and grounding to be reminded that this is the story of someone who lived and died.
“We’re able to dramatise it and put beautiful costumes and lights and amazing music behind it, but you can’t escape that this is an astounding story in its own right.”
The Australian production is counting down to its Australian premiere on 17 March at the Sydney Lyric Theatre and official opening on 27 March. Tickets are on sale via Ticketmaster.