The hit musical "Hamilton" premiered eight years ago off-Broadway. It garnered critical acclaim, set box office records and earned numerous awards, including 11 Tony Awards and the Pulitzer Prize for drama in 2016. Now the touring show is back in Boston, playing at the Citizens Bank Opera House through March 12.

Ta’Rea Campbell, who plays Angelica Schuyler in the production, said she knew how great "Hamilton" was going to be before she ever saw it herself, because word spread so fast in the small business of theater.

"When I went to opening night at The Public, it lived up to every expectation that I had," Campbell said on Boston Public Radio Thursday. "I thought it was a brilliant piece of theater. I thought it was so well made and showed such a love letter to what musical theater is, you know, the traditional part of musical theater, and then a love letter to hip-hop in our culture and the forward motion that Broadway needs to go in."

Pierre Jean Gonzalez, who plays Alexander Hamilton in the touring show, said the production really spoke to him as a Dominican–Puerto Rican who grew up in New York, surrounded by hip-hop.

"A lot of this music, a lot of this text, feels like my own little personal Shakespeare, you know, when it comes to it connects to my culture, to what I grew up with," he said. "So it holds a really special part of my heart."

Gonzalez said the fact “Hamilton” puts actors of color in the literal spotlight is essentially “throwing it in people’s faces” that people of color weren’t included in historical narratives — even as they helped build this country.

“We know because we are marginalized and because we were oppressed for so long, a lot of our stories were silenced. And so there are a lot of things that people do not know. ... You don’t know what someone has decided to omit from the history books,” Campbell said. “Now, George Washington — which is played by Marcus [Choi] today in our company — was not an Asian person. But it’s OK to show that the people that were building the country are playing these roles. I think it's dope.”

One way this groundbreaking show is changing? Gonzalez pointed to the audiences.

“Hamilton is still very much about clout, about status. You know, you go to the show because you have money to go to the show, right?” Gonzalez said. “In the beginning, it was all white faces watching us on stage. But now we have to change the culture, and we have to give more access to people to be able to see this show and to be able to see themselves in history.”

Crowds have progressively grown more diverse, Gonzalez said, but he added the work is not done.

Gonzalez and his fiancé, Cedric Leiba Jr., took the money they were going to spend on their wedding and instead created the production company DominiRican Productions to get more people of color on both sides of the camera.

“How can I do work to give visibility to my people, to my culture, to my friends, my artist friends who have been struggling for years, trying to get opportunities?" Gonzalez said. "Now we have filmed about four to five short films, we're working now filming different theater companies in New York — and we're thriving, and we're giving more opportunity and work for our Afro-Latinx and queer artists."