“Imagine Star Wars was opening in one cinema in one city and that was the only place you could see it. That’s sort of what’s happening with this.”— Sonia Friedman (quoted in The Telegraph)
In what was to us a small feat of magic in of itself, my friend Helen and I managed to get our hands on tickets to the Harry Potter play yesterday. We lined up at 10am in the returns queue and waited for four hours (!) and just barely got the last tickets to the day’s shows. The last hour before Part 1 was due to start playing was particularly nerve-wracking, as crowds of blissfully-already-ticketed theatre-goers pressed against us and we hoped against hope for more returns to come in. But finally the theater attendant came by with his clipboard and tickets spreadsheet and theater layout plan and asked us if we were interested in two singles that were available. Our answer was a very quick yes.
The play is amazing. It’s magical, spellbinding, bewitching, any choice of thaumaturgic adjective works.I was completely enthralled for the entirety of the 5+ hours of showtime. I even had to switch from contacts to glasses towards the end because my eyes were drying out from staring so intently at the stage. The story and plot are iconic JK Rowling Harry Potter; the stagecraft and special effects are wonderfully designed and thrillingly executed. I’m so so delighted I got the chance to experience the play as it was meant to be experienced, on stage in the West End, with its original cast and in its opening months no less.
(I can only warn that reading the script on its own is unlikely to evoke the same sort of immersive thrall, so if you think you might have the chance to see the play performed live, hold off on reading the book!)