Why In the Heights Is Going To Be Huge In 2020

'In The Heights' Will Be The Movie Of Summer In 2020

Let's take a stroll down Washington Heights.


When news broke out back in October 2018 about a worldwide online audition for a movie musical, everyone on the internet was intrigued. What could this movie musical be? Is it a famous musical? Who is creating it? The internet-wide casting call asked for Latinx dancers, singers, and actors to star in a Broadway musical-turned-movie. The Broadway musical was none other than "In the Heights". Created by "Hamilton" creator Lin-Manuel Miranda, "In the Heights" is a musical about the residents that live in the Hispanic-American neighborhood of Washington Heights in New York. The central storyline focuses on the fact that someone in the neighborhood has won a $96,000 lottery ticket.

Lin-Manuel Miranda starred as the main character and narrator Usnavi de la Vega back in its Broadway run in 2008. The show gained thirteen Tony award nominations and won four them, including Best Musical and Best Original Score. With the success of Lin-Manuel Miranda's first ever musical, a film adaptation had been in the works since 2008. Unfortunately, it had been moved around multiple companies before finally finding a home with Warner Bros. Pictures in a studio bidding war that resulted in a $50 million payout.

Anthony Ramos, who starred in "Hamilton" as Hamilton's son, Philip, as well as his best friend, John Laurens, has been cast to play Usnavi. Ramos is a very talented close friend of Miranda's. There's footage of Anthony Ramos portraying Usnavi in a Kennedy Center performance of "In the Heights".

The musical is composed of songs with not only rhythmic Latin music but hip-hop and freestyle rap. The combination of these different cultural music genres makes for a distinct-sounding musical. It's this same type of music that brings a refreshing look and a bigger audience towards Broadway. Not to mention how this musical serves as a reminder of the lack of Hispanic representation in Broadway musicals. How many Broadway musicals are there that represent a Latinx community? Very, very little.

This film adaptation will bring fun musical numbers to the silver screen, as well as a deep, heartfelt story. This movie will be a cultural explosion and can be expected to do great at the box office. Warner Bros. has a projected release date of June 26, 2020. People will not be ready for the amazing soundtrack this movie musical will be bringing. In the meantime, you could always check out the Original Broadway Cast Album just to get a taste of this amazing music.

I'm looking forward to seeing an almost fully Latinx cast (with the exclusion of Benny, a non-Hispanic character) on the big screen. It's about time!

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15 Songs To Listen To On Your Next Road Trip

The best road trips are the ones with windows down, music blaring, and you singing your heart out.


Over the years, I have taken an abundance of road trips by myself and with other people. These trips have ranged from two to 18 hours at once. I always look for playlists to listen to before starting the journey because I know I'll need something to keep me awake. Here are some of the songs that put me in a road trip mood and keep me cruising along.

1. "Mr. Brightside" by The Killers

2. "I Write Sins Not Tragedies" by Panic! At The Disco

3. "Don't Stop Believin'" by Journeyย 

4. "The Great Escape" by Boys Like Girls

5. "Livin' On A Prayer" by Bon Jovi

6. "Check Yes, Juliet" by We The Kings

7. "The Middle" by Jimmy Eat World

8. "Dirty Little Secret" by The All-American Rejects

9. "Year 3000" by Jonas Brothers

10. "Absolutely (Story of a Girl)" by Nine Days

11. "Uptown Girl" by Billy Joel

12. "Escape (The Pina Colada Song)" by Rupert Holmes

13. "You Found Me" by The Fray

14. "DONTTRUSTME" by 3OH!3

15. "Lips Of An Angel" by Hinder

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10 Best Beach Reads Everyone Should Take A Look At This Summer

All book lovers know that the best time to read is every day of the year, but there's no denying that reading the perfect book in the summertime can't be beat.


One of my major struggles, whenever I go on vacation, is that I end up bringing way too many books because I never know what reading mood I'm going to be in! What if I want something sad? What if I want to read a really long book or a fantasy? I just never know because my reading preferences can change so fast. I have some books here that I think to cover all of the bases, and for me personally, when I think of summer vacation, I usually look for more fun, contemporary books. They're the perfect beach reads, and they don't take too much thought.

1. 1. ๐‘ป๐’‰๐’† ๐‘บ๐’–๐’ ๐’Š๐’” ๐‘จ๐’๐’”๐’ ๐’‚ ๐‘บ๐’•๐’‚๐’“ by Nicola Yoon

It is Natasha's last day in New York City, where she has lived for 10 years. Her family, living as undocumented immigrants in a small Brooklyn apartment, are being deported to Jamaica after her father's arrest for drunk driving. Natasha is scouring the city for a chance to stay in the United States legally. She wants the normal teen existence of her peers. Meanwhile, poetic Daniel is on his way to an interview as part of his application process to Yale. He is under great pressure to get in because his parents (who emigrated from South Korea) are adamant that he become a doctor. Events slowly conspire to bring the two leads together. When Daniel and Natasha finally meet, he falls in love immediately and convinces her to join him for the day. They tell their stories in alternating chapters. Additional voices are integrated into the book as characters interact with them. The Sun Is Also A Star is a book about love, experience, and destiny.

2. 2. ๐‘ป๐’‰๐’† ๐‘ฎ๐’†๐’๐’ˆ๐’“๐’‚๐’‘๐’‰๐’š ๐’๐’‡ ๐‘ณ๐’๐’”๐’• ๐‘ป๐’‰๐’Š๐’๐’ˆ๐’” by Jessica Brody

This follows Ali, and Ali's father has passed away, but she's struggling to deal with it because he was estranged. She never really got to have the relationship with him that she would've wanted. Ali is very surprised to find that her father has left his prized possession behind, his 1968 Firebird convertible. Ali's family is struggling financially, so she is very thankful for the car but doesn't want to keep it, knowing it holds memories of her father that she is not ready to confront. Knowing it is worth a lot of money and could be sold, Ali decides to look for buyers. The person who is interested in the car lives 300 miles up the Pacific coast of California, and the car is a manual. Ali doesn't know how to drive a stick shift, but her ex-boyfriend Nico does. The two go together on a road trip. But when Nico starts collecting items from the quirky strangers they meet along the way, Ali starts to sense that these objects aren't random. Somehow they seem to be leading her to an unknown truth about her father. Above all, it is a story of grief, acceptance, discovering new things, and moving on.

3. 3. ๐‘ณ๐’‚๐’๐’…๐’๐’Š๐’๐’† by Rainbow Rowell

Georgie McCool knows her marriage is in trouble; it has been in trouble for a long time. She still loves her husband, Neal, and Neal still loves her, deeply โ€” but that almost seems beside the point now. Maybe that was always beside the point. Two days before they're supposed to visit Neal's family in Omaha for Christmas, Georgie tells Neal that she can't go. She's a TV writer, and something's come up on her show; she has to stay in Los Angeles. She knows that Neal will be upset with her โ€” Neal is always a little upset with Georgie โ€” but she doesn't expect him to pack up the kids and go home without her. When her husband and the kids leave for the airport, Georgie wonders if she's finally done it. If she's ruined everything. That night, Georgie discovers a way to communicate with Neal in the past. It's not time travel, not exactly, but she feels like she's been given an opportunity to fix her marriage before it starts... Is that what she's supposed to do? Or would Georgie and Neal be better off if their marriage never happened?

4. 4. ๐‘บ๐’Š๐’๐’„๐’† ๐’€๐’๐’–'๐’—๐’† ๐‘ฉ๐’†๐’†๐’ ๐‘ฎ๐’๐’๐’† by Morgan Matson

It was Sloane who yanked Emily out of her shell and made life 100% interesting. But right before what should have been the most epic summer, Sloane justโ€ฆdisappears. All she leaves behind is a to-do list. On it, thirteen Sloane-inspired tasks that Emily would normally never try. This book encourages trying new things, taking risks, and finding love when you least expect it.

5. 5. ๐‘ป๐’‰๐’† ๐‘ผ๐’๐’†๐’™๐’‘๐’†๐’„๐’•๐’†๐’… ๐‘ฌ๐’—๐’†๐’“๐’š๐’•๐’‰๐’Š๐’๐’ˆ by Morgan Matson

I read this book a year ago, and I am still so obsessed with it. It is the perfect summer novel! You can read my full review from by bookstagram below:

"I finished The Unexpected Everything after only reading it in a day, and it was so good!
Rating: โ˜† โ˜† โ˜† โ˜† โ˜†
I loved this book! It was such a good contemporary. I loved the character of Clark the most. He was so cute and nerdy and I just loved the relationship that he and Andie developed throughout the novel- very cute! I love that Morgan Matson included a message in this story, to just go where life takes you and stop worrying about the unexpected. When everything in your life is mapped out, it's impossible to find unexpected things in life. Overall, this book really opened my eyes to some things and how life is scary and complicated and stressful, but it can also be beautiful and carefree and worthwhile. Life is what you make it."

6. 6. ๐‘ป๐’‰๐’† ๐‘บ๐’•๐’“๐’‚๐’๐’ˆ๐’† ๐’‚๐’๐’… ๐‘ฉ๐’†๐’‚๐’–๐’•๐’Š๐’‡๐’–๐’ ๐‘บ๐’๐’“๐’“๐’๐’˜๐’” ๐’๐’‡ ๐‘จ๐’—๐’‚ ๐‘ณ๐’‚๐’—๐’†๐’๐’…๐’†๐’“ by Leslye Walton

The beautiful, lyrical prose is what drew me in, and it is truly remarkable. This book was one of my favorite reads of 2018, and I look forward to rereading it very soon! I highly recommend reading this on a flight or a long road trip. You'll thank me later.

Here's the synopsis, according to Penguin Random House:

"Foolish love appears to be the Roux family birthright, an ominous forecast for its most recent progeny, Ava Lavender. Ava โ€” in all other ways a normal girl โ€” is born with the wings of a bird. In a quest to understand her peculiar disposition and a growing desire to fit in with her peers, sixteen-year old Ava ventures into the wider world, ill-prepared for what she might discover and naive to the twisted motives of others. Others like the pious Nathaniel Sorrows, who mistakes Ava for an angel and whose obsession with her grows until the night of the summer solstice celebration. That night, the skies open up, rain and feathers fill the air, and Ava's quest and her family's saga build to a devastating crescendo. First-time author Leslye Walton has constructed layered and unforgettable mythology of what it means to be born with hearts that are tragically, exquisitely human."

7. 7. ๐‘ป๐’ ๐‘จ๐’๐’ ๐’•๐’‰๐’† ๐‘ฉ๐’๐’š๐’” ๐‘ฐ'๐’—๐’† ๐‘ณ๐’๐’—๐’†๐’… ๐‘ฉ๐’†๐’‡๐’๐’“๐’† by Jenny Han

I'm sure you're all familiar with this one! It's actually now a movie on Netflix, and I highly recommend watching it AFTER you read this amazing book! I actually read this book last summer, and I remember really enjoying it! You can read my full, spoiler-free review from by bookstagram down below:

"Rating: โ˜† โ˜† โ˜† โ˜† โ˜†
Overall, I was very pleased with this contemporary, and I loved how it wasn't mainly focused on the romance aspect of Lara Jean's letters. Rather, it showed the sisterhood and family bonding dynamic that is hard to find in contemporaries nowadays. I really loved how Lara Jean began to mature throughout the novel, and when her letters got sent out, I found myself panicking with her.I could really relate to her character because I used to love the idea of being in love, just like her. I'm sure she will learn what genuine love is and will experience it fully...not just puppy love you see in high school."

8. 8. ๐‘จ๐’Ž๐’š & ๐‘น๐’๐’ˆ๐’†๐’“'๐’” ๐‘ฌ๐’‘๐’Š๐’„ ๐‘ซ๐’†๐’•๐’๐’–๐’“ by Morgan Matson

Here's the synopsis, according to Google Books:

"There were three things Amy Curry didn't expect out of senior year. First: her father's death. Second: her mother's decision to relocate to the East Coast. Third: Roger Sullivan. After her father's sudden death, Amy's mom has decided to start anewโ€”in Connecticut, just before the start of senior year. And she's decided that it'll be Amy's job to get the car from California to Connecticut. The only problem? Amy hasn't gotten behind the wheel since the car accident that took her father's life. Enter Roger, a family friend, tasked by his mother to help Amy drive across the country. Amy's not pleased to be driving across the country with a boy she barely knows, but as Amy gets lost on her cross-country adventure, she must confront the past she's running from, come to terms with the grief of losing a parent, and learn how to open her heart in order to find herself again."

9. 9. ๐‘บ๐’†๐’„๐’๐’๐’… ๐‘ช๐’‰๐’‚๐’๐’„๐’† ๐‘บ๐’–๐’Ž๐’Ž๐’†๐’“ย by Morgan Matson

Here's the synopsis, according to Google Books:

"Taylor Edwards family might not be that close - everyone is a little too busy and overscheduled, but for the most part, they get along just fine. Then Taylor's dad gets some devastating news, and her parents decide that the family will spend last summer together at their old lake house in the Pocono Mountains. Crammed into a place much smaller than they are used to, they begin to get to know each other again, but as the summer progresses they're more aware than ever that they're battling a ticking clock. And as Taylor tries to deal with the drama at home, she is faced with the fact that the friends she thought she'd left behind haven't actually gone anywhere. Her former summer best friend is still living across the lake and still as mad with Taylor as she was five years ago, and her first boyfriend has moved in next doorโ€ฆ but he's much cuter at seventeen than he was at twelve. Can one summer be enough time to get a second chance - with family, friends, and love?"

10. 10. ๐‘ฐ ๐‘บ๐’†๐’† ๐‘ณ๐’๐’๐’…๐’๐’, ๐‘ฐ ๐‘บ๐’†๐’† ๐‘ญ๐’“๐’‚๐’๐’„๐’† by Sarah Mlynowski

This is the perfect European travel novel, especially for anyone who has ever dreamed and obsessed over the idea of traveling to Europe. This follows Sydney and Lila, and they have been planning this backpacking trip around Europe for ages, and it is finally here. However, things don't go exactly to plan, especially when Lila's ex-boyfriend ends up showing up, which leads to a lot of drama. He also brought along a friend, who Sydney is immediately drawn to. This is just a super funny, fast-paced novel that you will find yourself super engaged in. It's one of my favorites!

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