Leslie Odom, Jr. who’s won rave reviews and most recently a Tony for his performance on the smash Broadway musical Hamilton, is set to leave the show on July 9.
According to the New York Times, Odom made the announcement in a short video on Facebook Live that was streaming live from his dressing room before a Sunday matinee of the show.
“It has just been the most completely wonderful, totally healing and inspiring experience from beginning to end,” said Odom, who has portrayed Aaron Burr in the Broadway production.
He continued, “I’m excited to have a blank page again. I’m excited to go out and find something new.”
Odom’s plan to leave Hamilton, comes after other members of the show had made announcements that they were exiting the show, according to the International Business Times. Lin-Manuel Miranda who wrote the show and portrays Alexander Hamilton is leaving on July 9. Phillipa Soo, who portrays Eliza Hamilton, will also exiting the show on the same day.
“I will never forget the people that I’ve met here. I will never forget all of you,” said Odom, who said that the rehearsals were the most exciting part of working on the show.
He continued, “I can’t wait to see all the guys that come after me and show me [more] about Burr.”
Entertainment Weekly reported that Odom made a mention of a performance with the original cast being filmed before Miranda is due to leave Hamilton.
He added, “I would love to be a part of it. There’s a small chance I won’t be, and if I’m not, I’m sure they’ll find somebody great.”
As of now, it is not known what will happen to the footage, but there will be reportedly two different performances that will be recorded. Miranda also noted that there will not be a film adaption of Hamilton in the near future. However, there is talk for a film adaption of Miranda’s first musical, In the Heights.
Michael Paulson of the New York Times noted that one of the reasons for Leslie Odom, Jr. and other cast members leaving the hit show comes from the fact that many of them signed a one-year contract that will expire soon.
“The show’s unusual prominence has led to other opportunities for some of its performers,” said Paulson.
“It’s no shock that Odom and others from the original cast are ready to move on,” said Scott Feinberg of Billboard, who noted that show has since won a Grammy, a Pulitzer, and 11 Tonys.
“Their work began at New York’s Public Theater way back in January 2015, following a lengthy workshop/rehearsal period.”
The Charlotte Observer reported that Odom wants to focus on his music career once he leaves Hamilton. This month he released a self-titled jazz album, which is part of a four album deal he has with S-Curve Records. That record has become popular, reaching the top of iTunes’ jazz charts.
Meanwhile, Miranda is set to work on a Mary Poppins remake and has written a soundtrack for the upcoming Disney film Moana. Soo will voice a character in the film due for release in November, and next year will star in a Broadway adaption of the French film, Amelie.
Jonathan Groff, who also left Hamilton on April 9, will be starring in a new Netflix series titled Mindhunter.
[Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images]