And they're MAGICAL (geddit?)
Last night was the first official night of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. You’d be forgiven for thinking it had been open for a while, but the last eight weeks have been previews, which is basically when they try things out, see how it works and do things like decide using live owls isn’t going to work.
But now it’s officially open, and that means reviews. The good news for the Cursed Child creative team is that the critics absolutely loved it. The Guardian’s most famous reviewer, Michael Billington, described being spell-bound (sorry, couldn’t resist) by the play, despite having a limited knowledge of the Potter world, writing: ‘Occasionally, as fans gasped at new pieces of information, I felt like a teetotaller at a convention of licensed victuallers. But, while it helps to be a paid-up Potterhead, Tiffany and his team stage the piece with such dazzling assurance that I finally began to see the point of being wild about Harry.’
The Telegraph called it ‘pure magic’ and the New York Times reported that it ‘casts a spell on stage.’
Audiences are handed ‘keep the secrets’ badges as they leave the theatre, and who could bring themself to upset JK by spilling the beans? So all we’ll say is that Imogen Heap’s music is astonishing, the magic is just as good as anything done on screen by CGI, the entire cast are incredible (special mention to Anthony Boyle playing Scorpius) and one Marie Claire staffer admits that she cried for the first 45 minutes because it was so exciting to be immersed in Harry’s world all over again.
It’s not just the critics who loved it though, audience were also seriously impressed. Check out some of the (spoiler free) reactions.
The play is going down so well with fans that the resale price on tickets has completely skyrocketed, with tickets, originally priced between £30 and £120, now being resold for an incredible £2,000.
Since we finished the last page of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, we’ve been *hoping* J.K. Rowling would write another story about the world’s favourite wizard. So when news broke that there world be a Potter play – well, let’s just say there was a lot of screaming involved.
Based on an original story by J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child will be the eighth story in the Harry Potter series, and will be the first time a Harry Potter story will be told on stage.
The cast photos for the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child play are the gift that just keeps giving. This week we’ve already got excited over the Potter family, and the Granger-Weasleys. And now we’ve losing it over the new photos of Draco Malfoy the adult, and his son Scorpius.
The love-to-hate character was originally played by Tom Felton, who’s now 28 and still working as an actor, with appearances in Belle and Risen. But the mantle of playing Draco, who was Harry’s school nemesis, has been passed on to 31 year-old Alex Price. And the grown-up Draco seems to have followed in his father’s footsteps by rocking a blonde pony tail. Chic.
His son, Scorpius, is played by Anthony Boyle, and whilst we don’t know if Scorpius will follow in his father’s bad-boy footsteps, his expression in the photo doesn’t exactly make him look friendly.
The play also released the first family portrait of Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger and their little girl, Rose Granger-Weasley.
45-year-old Noma Dumezwani will play Hermione Granger, who graduated from Hogwarts to become a lawyer in the department of Magical Law Enforcement, while Paul Thornley will take over from Rupert Grint to play Ron Weasley.
Previously, the internet broke over the first released images of Harry Potter himself, played by original History Boy actor Jamie Parker, 36. His family portrait showed off his wife, Ginny Weasley, as well as the Potter’s eldest son – and the play’s lead character – Albus Potter, played by Sam Clemmett.
While Harry himself is featured in the play, the real hero will be Harry’s youngest son, Albus, and his struggle with the weight of the Potter legacy.
The story will take place 19 years after the last Harry Potter novel: Harry is working at the Ministry of Magic and is the father of three school-aged children.
And if that doesn’t make you excited enough, the play premierea next month on 30th July, with public previews starting in 6 days.
Still confused about the play? Here’s your need-to-know on Harry Potter And The Cursed Child…
J.K’s Loves The Cast
While Noma’s casting as Hermione Granger made a few headlines upon its announcement in 2015, J.K. Rowling was quick to defend the decision to cast a black actor, tweeting ‘Canon: brown eyes, frizzy hair and very clever. White skin was never specified. Rowling loves black Hermione.’
Right on, J.K.
Source: BBC via Giphy.com
It’s Being Billed As The ‘Eighth Harry Potter Story’
The play is a sequel to the original Harry Potter stories and takes place 19 years on from the last Potter book, where Harry is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children. The focus of the new tale is on Harry’s son Albus as he struggles with a family legacy he never really wanted.
‘As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places,’ the official teaser reveals.
Who is Albus?
Albus is the second son of Harry and Ginny and we actually caught a glimpse of him and his siblings James and Lily on Platform 9 3/4 at the end of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – but you knew that of course…
It’s A Two-Part Play
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Part I and Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Part II are actually separate plays, not just two halves of one play (yep, that confused us too). The two parts are designed to either be watched in one day (i.e. a matinée followed by an evening performance) or on two consecutive days. Sneaky marketing indeed, but the upside is you get double the Harry Potter fun.
Imogen Heap Is Doing The Soundtrack
Don’t panic they haven’t turned Harry Potter into a musical but the play will accompanied with some music, and Imogen Heap will be providing it – which just made us want to see it even more.
Tickets Are Already Selling Out Fast
Not a big surprise this one. The lucky people who pre-registered for priority tickets earlier this year could buy tickets in late October 2015 and yep, you guessed it, they sold out in a matter of hours. According to The Independent 175,000 tickets were sold in eight hours and resale sites are now selling on tickets for prices in excess of £1000.
If you missed out on tickets, you can try your luck with getting tickets for September 2016 onwards performances in a weekly and daily lottery nearer the time.