Renee Elise Goldsberry on reuniting with her fellow Schuyler Sisters to sing ‘America the Beautiful’ at the big game

By Jessica Derschowitz
Updated February 07, 2017 at 11:52 AM EST
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Credit: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

Before the New England Patriots went on to defeat the Atlanta Falcons at Super Bowl LI on Sunday, there was a different kind of patriotic celebration on the field in Houston — a reunion of Hamilton’s original Schuyler Sisters.

Renée Elise Goldsberry, Phillipa Soo, and Jasmine Cephas Jones — who originated the roles of Angelica, Eliza, and Peggy Schuyler in the Broadway smash — performed “America the Beautiful” ahead of Sunday’s big game, and earned enormous applause when they added the words “and sisterhood” to the line, “God shed his grace on thee/ And crown thy good with brotherhood/ From sea to shining sea!”

Speaking to EW on Tuesday, Goldsberry said the idea for that addition came from the three of them.

“That was our idea. We are sisters [laughs] and it only seemed fitting to shout out the brothers and the sisters,” she said. “One thing that’s been really special being in and representing Hamilton is celebrating women’s role in history, which is sometimes lost. So we’ve had a lot of practice and help writing that amongst a lot of really talented women and this was another opportunity to do that. And I’m really grateful that it was so well received and so supported by the NFL.”

The three stars have all departed the Hamilton cast (Soo exited in July, Goldsberry in September, and Cephas Jones in December), so the reunion was a special treat for fans of the musical, and the actresses themselves.

“We had the most amazing experience,” said Goldsberry. “It was the best reunion. We hadn’t all been together since Phillipa left the show, and so it felt like a family reunion. And then on top of that, I’m from Houston, so that was an extra special treat to be at home with my mother and my brother and my children and my husband, and just to see the city celebrated in that way was really special. I had the opportunity to share that city with the girls, which was also really fun.”