"Are all Broadway plays like this?" That was the question a co-worker of mine asked about a month go, when she saw Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two. It practically drove her crazy not getting an answer from me for weeks, and even more so, not being able to discuss it until after I finally saw it. Yes, I made her #KeepTheSecrets. Here, I will endeavor to do the same for you.
|The Cursed Child Company|
What I loved best about all of the design elements is that they recognized both the films and the book illustrations while still being creative and new for the stage. Christine Jones' set design is remarkable for both its scale and minimalism; the characters don't get lost (unless they are supposed to) in the constant motion of the set pieces, but there's no lack of magic to the design, either. And that "magic" isn't a pun, it's figurative and liberal. The same can be said for Katrina Lindsay's elaborately simple costumes and Neil Austin's evocative lighting, which is notable as much for its color pallet as its striking use of darkness.
|Movement by Steven Hoggett|
|Hermione, Harry and Ron|
Every member of the main cast is sensational, too, giving us so much to chew on. And they are outstanding - funny, tough, enigmatic. Here, we have adult versions of the kids we grew to love: Draco Malfoy (Alex Price), Ginny Weasley-Potter (Poppy Miller), Ron Weasley (Paul Thornley), Hermione Granger (Noma Dumezweni), and, of course, Harry Potter (Jamie Parker). And adulting for these people hasn't been easy. They now have kids, who come with their own set of problems. It isn't an easy life when you are a part of the wizarding world. While I wish the incoming class of Cursed Child all the best (and I really hope to see them), I can't imagine a better cast.
|Sam Clemmett and Anthony Boyle|
So, I answered my co-worker, "No. Not all Broadway plays are like Cursed Child." There are so many things I want to write about this extraordinary production and vastly entertaining play. The themes, the portrayals, the surprises...but I won't ruin it for you. Just see it to believe it.
And when you do, please #KeepTheSecrets.
(Photos by J. Kyler, M. Hanlan)