Bruce Springsteen has now weighed in on the Hamilton controversy in his own way by sharing wife Patti Scialfa's photo of the couple taking in a matinee performance of the Broadway show Sunday afternoon (Nov. 20).
The couple posed for a selfie in front of the Richard Rodgers Theatre in New York City, with Scialfa writing "looking for VP elect Pence #freedomofspeech."
To recap: the cast of Hamilton took to the stage after their Friday night curtain call to address Vice President-elect Mike Pence, who attended the show. Cast member Brandon Victor Dixon read from the stage: "Vice President-elect Mike Pence, we welcome you and truly thank you for joining us at Hamilton American Musical. We sir, we are the diverse America who are alarmed and anxious that your new administration will not protect us, our planet, our children, our parents, or defend us and uphold our inalienable rights, sir. We truly hope that this show has inspired you to uphold our American values and to work on behalf of all of us."
From Patti: "@HamiltonMusical Sunday matinee -- looking for VP elect Pence #freedomofspeech" https://t.co/yGwJyiEp46 pic.twitter.com/eZEnu7F1pl
- Bruce Springsteen (@springsteen) November 20, 2016
E Street Band member Steven Van Zandt -- while not disagreeing with the statement -- took to Twitter the next day to say the cast chose an "inappropriate" time to make their stand, and instead was "bullying" the politician. "A guy comes to a Broadway show for a relaxing night out. Instead he gets a lecture from the stage! Not a level playing field. It's bullying," he wrote. "You don't single out an audience member and embarrass him from the stage. A terrible precedent to set."
"So because he's a public figure we should be rude to him and bully him at public events?" he continued. "I'm not the one who couldn't be more wrong on this."
E Street Band guitarist Nils Lofgren had a different take. "I don't see any [bullying] here. Bravo," Lofgren tweeted. "It is ok to disagree. The audience had the freedom to boo. The statement was truth to power. Any chance you get to speak truth to power right now, you have to take it."
Van Zandt -- who called the statement beautiful -- disagreed, saying the proper place for such a statement is in the art of the play itself. "How about IN THE PLAY! For starters. Just as Lin-Manuel Miranda (the creator of 'Hamilton') is already brilliantly doing," Van Zandt tweeted. "And oh yeah, elections."
Pence told Fox News that Hamilton was an "incredible production" involving a very talented cast. On whether he thought an apology was necessary, he said: "I'll leave it to others whether that was the appropriate venue to say it."