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This Lin-Manuel Miranda Impersonator Is So Convincing, He Fooled The TikTok Copyright System

We don’t talk about the-copyright-algorithm, no, no, no…

Credit: umokayig / TikTok

We live in a borderline-dystopian vision of society lately; our every move is distilled into data that’s commodified and traded in the back-alley interests of hidden global tech monoliths. But sometimes, even our almighty data-driven overlords get things wrong. In this case, our hero is the unlikely, yet talented TikTok star Noah Manumaleuga, whose Lin-Manuel Miranda impression is so convincing, it managed to momentarily topple one of the most sophisticated rights-protection units on the internet.

Manumaleuga (@umokayig) has amassed a TikTok following of over 176k and 10 million total likes in only a couple years of activity. Amongst his variety of content, the content creator boasts a stunningly faithful vocal impression of Tony-award winner and local meme, Lin-Manuel Miranda.

This glory wasn’t to last long, though, as, in Manumaleuga’s words, he may have ‘girlbossed a bit too close to the sun’ in his artistic pursuits. On 16th January, the impersonator woke up to find that his Miranda-styled mock-ups of some Encanto demo songs had been struck down as a result of the unlawful posting of supposedly unreleased content. 

The impressions were, admittedly, spot-on, so it’s an easy mistake to make. In the update TikTok, Manumaleuga details the series of events that alerted him to his video’s plight. Tragically, it seems the tracks may stay lost to the unfeeling clutches of copyright law.

https://www.tiktok.com/@umokayig/video/7045007770373999878?is_copy_url=1&is_from_webapp=v1&lang=en

In recent months, the subject of Manumaleuga’s impersonations has been the topic of much online talk. Ever since Miranda’s breakout hit in the form of multi-award-winning musical Hamilton, the songwriter has become a household name in the world of musical theatre. 

Most notably, Miranda has been involved in the creation of a number of new Disney IP’s, starting with the 2016 seafaring hit Moana. In his latest collaboration with the entertainment mega-corporation, Miranda orchestrated the soundtrack to Disney’s latest animated blockbuster: Encanto. 

Manumaleuga’s first posted impression of the theatre veteran dates back to the early days of 2020, with a quick, Frozen-themed skit:

@umokayig

Good news Lin-Manuel Miranda: Frozen! Inspired by: @drewboudreau #fyp #theater #musicaltheater #linmanuelmiranda #hamilton

♬ original sound – Noah Manumaleuga

One thing’s for sure: the TikToker has a sharp ear for picking up on the subtle Miranda-isms of everyday speech. Whether this is a blessing or a curse is still to be entirely determined. 

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