Script and stage show by: JK Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne
Rating: 5 stars (because, it’s Harry Potter!) I love Harry Potter, I mean, a lot more than the average person. I am actually the Harry Potter trivia champion of Johannesburg 2016. Team name: Hogwarts School of witchcraft and Quizzardry. (Yes, I know!)
When JK Rowling – or, Jo, to those of us in the know – announced that her script for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child would be available for sale I was very conflicted – should I read it, shouldn’t I? On one hand, I can’t get enough of Harry Potter and this was more material from Jo herself! But on the other, a play is meant to be watched, and not read. I was worried that some of the magic wouldn’t translate from stage format onto script format. In the end, I decided not to read it until I had watched the play, which I was lucky enough to do last weekend.
I am going to honour Jo’s request to #keepthesecrets and not give away any spoilers – so here is the official synopsis from Pottermore: “It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee, a husband, and the father of three school-aged children. While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes darkness comes from unexpected places”
The stage production is truly masterful – the way they do the magic on stage is, well, magical. I loved it and was on the edge of my seat. I both laughed out loud and cried at various times during the show. Pretty much as soon as I got home from the play I started reading the script which I had pre downloaded onto my kindle. I enjoyed the play just as much the second time – and the benefit of knowing how the actors played the parts made reading the play more meaningful. I do feel that some of the humour especially, would have been lost on me if I was only reading the script. The storyline is not as complex as the other Harry Potter books because obviously the benefit of prose is that the author can explain everything that is happening. This makes the script a very quick read.
TO READ OR NOT TO READ
Therefore, my recommendation is: if you think you will ever get a chance to watch this wonderful play, consider holding off reading the script of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. If this seems unlikely (or you aren’t that committed) then the script will still be a very enjoyable read. Just make sure your imagination is firing at maximum capacity.
If you have already read the script – you will still have an unbelievable experience watching the play if you ever get the chance to. The acting adds a whole other layer onto the storyline. Whichever way you decide to experience Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, you’re in for a treat!
But remember to #keepthesecrets
– Debbie Thompson, Hufflepuff