Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Thoughts and Discussion | Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

So, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child came out a few days ago and already there are reviews that are damning the play for various reasons. I was fortunate enough to go and see the play in June before the script was released as abook, which meant I got to see it first hand rather than reading it (thank you Hollie for getting the tickets!). And I have to say, I absolutely loved the play - the acting was the best I'd ever seen (especially Scorpius, Draco, Harry, Ron, and Hermione); the characters were on point; the stage direction and magic done onstage was astounding; and the music and special effects made the entire night magical. But, the one thing I thought while watching the play was 'This will absolutely not translate into a written book/script to read at all - people who read this will never want to go and see the play'. And it seems I was mostly right, which is very unfortunate.
Now, I was never a massive fan of reading plays anyway. I thought I hated Shakespeare for years throughout school because we'd only ever read the plays and I found them boring. However, when I went to see them at a Theatre or watched a film version of them, I found out how much I loved them. I think reading plays will never have the same impact as watching them - they're basically all the dialogue of a book but with very little description, so they don't translate well as written word. Plays should never be purely read as I think half of it is lost.
I agree with what many people are saying about The Cursed Child: it's a bit cliché, it reads a bit like fanfiction, some of the characters are different to how they were in the books, and most of all I don't believe for a second that one of the things in the play could have happened at all. In spite of this, the play is still a wonderful masterpiece to see and I highly recommend seeing regardless of how you felt about the script of The Cursed Child. It's an experience that can't be felt through the pages of the script and it's worth being there for the atmosphere of having hundreds of Potter fans in one room seeing something new in the fandom. That being said I'm aware of how difficult it is to get tickets, but if you get the chance then take it!
I mostly wanted to put this out to counteract (slightly) the awful reviews the book has been getting, and also to give some advice to those people who intend to watch the play, I recommend not reading this until after you've seen the play as I think you'll find the experience more enjoyable and not tainted with the views you might have on the script (not something I ever thought I'd say as I'm a big proclaimer of reading a book before a movie!). Anyway, I've had my say! Let me know what you guys think about the script or play if you've seen it and what you think!