Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (Parts I and II)

harrypotterandthecursedchildLondon:
Opened at the Palace Theatre, 30 July 2016 (previews from 7 June 2016)
Originally planned to close May 27 2017, the show is currently booking to July 2018.

Broadway:
The Lyric Theatre official opening April 22, 2018. Preview dates to be confirmed.

Official website: http://www.harrypottertheplay.com

Creative Team

Director: John Tiffany
Playwright: Jack Thorne
Based on an original story by: J.K.Rowling, Jack Thorne, John Tiffany
Movement Director: Steven Hoggett
Set Designer: Christine Jones
Costume Design:  Katrina Lindsay
Composer & Arranger: Imogen Heap
Lighting Designer: Neil Austin [interview]
Sound Designer: Gareth Fry
Illusions & Magic: Jamie Harrison
Music Supervisor & Arranger: Martin Lowe
Special Effects: Jeremy Chernick
Casting Director: Julia Horan CDG
Production Manager: Gary Besstone
Production Stage Manager: Sam Hunter
Associate Director: Des Kennedy
Associate Movement Director: Neil Bettles
Associate Set Designer: Brett J. Banakis
Associate Sound Designer: Pete Malkin

Lighting Design – Neil Austin

Some beautifully subtle lighting effects, working with haze and projection to transform the blank canvas of the set into a huge variety of locations.
Particularly impressive are the battens used to backlight the train chase sequence – it looks like they’re pixel mapped to provide a sense of movement (along with wind effects) whilst still ensuring the relevant cast members are lit.
However, the most impressive aspect of the lighting design is what isn’t lit. Many of the illusions in the show require very subtle lighting effects to ensure that the audience is looking at the right thing, and that they don’t notice the secrets which enable the illusions to operate.

Keep the Secrets – Magic & Illusion

There are a number of wonderful recreations of classic stage illusions during the show (particularly during Part 1), all of which are carried out with a great deal of skill and using traditional (and therefore very successful) theatrical techniques.
In particular the number of sudden appearances of certain characters in different parts of the stage is dizzyingly impressive. While similar ideas have been used in shows such as Our House and Groundhog Day, the sheer number of illusions and the pace at which they’re carried out is a joy to behold.
I won’t go into any more detail (#keepthesecrets) but any fans of magic and illusion should make every effort to see the show.

Set Design

Pottermore Feature

Sound Design

Interview with Gareth Fry

Movement Direction

Reviews

External

Harry Potter make-over planning permission (The Stage, 27 May 2016)

Rehearsal Room visit with J.K.Rowling

Behind the Scenes at the Palace Theatre with Sonia Friedman and Colin Callender

(this video was produced for Universal Studios Orlando, in January 2016, for The Celebration of Harry Potter)