Here’s what you need to know about Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

  • Prerna Madan, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Jul 31, 2016 20:40 IST
The Special Rehearsal edition of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child will be available at book stores from 11:30am on Sunday. (Pottermore)

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child releases on July 31, the day one of the most famous wizards was born (it may be happening in your head but why on earth does it mean it’s not real?). No, it’s not a novel and Harry probably has a few grey hair 19 years later, but the scar and round spectacles persevere.

The Cursed Child opens -- a day before its publication as the Special Rehearsal Edition -- at London’s Palace Theatre at the West End in an elaborate stage production that stays true to the franchise. Those who can’t wait till 2017 to get tickets for the play, the script will be available at book stores from 11:30am on Sunday.

A scene from preview of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, in London. (Pottermore)

Here’s everything you need to know about the Cursed Child:

Like the Deathly Hallows movie, the Cursed Child is also divided into Part 1 and 2. Luckily, the gap won’t be as torturous as the movie (remember when you nearly killed yourself waiting for the second Deathly Hallows movie). Both parts will be played out on the same day and the script comes in one consolidated form.

Although the dates aren’t known, the definitive and revised edition of The Cursed Child will be published in early 2017.

How do you get it?

According to reports, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is already a best-seller, courtesy pre-bookings. Here’s how you can order yours:

Priced at $17.99 in the US, it costs Rs 580 on online portals in India (Amazon, Flipkart)

Rs 674 on Crossword bookstore’s website, 10% off on Oxford stores.

Just pop into a book store if you can’t wait a few days to receive your copy of the script.

Read | A fan’s take: Why Harry Potter was the chosen one

Who’s who in the play?

Conceptualised by JK Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child will unveil 42 characters -- old and new. The synopsis reads: “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.”

Jamie Parker, Sam Clemmett and Poppy Miller pose for a Potter family portrait. (Pottermore)

Draco and Scorpius Malfoy played by Alex Price and Anthony Boyle. (Pottermore)

Paul Thornley, Noma Dumezweni and Cherrelle Skeete play Ron, Hermione and Rose. (Pottermore)

What’s new

Is that Hermione?

Apart from the glaring, staring-at-your-face return of Harry Potter, there’s a whole new Hermione to imagine. In a controversial decision, black English actress Noma Dumezweni was chosen to play Hermione’s role in the Cursed Child. Dumezweni as the nerdy character we grew up to love and idolise in Emma Watson surely complicates the existing image of Hermione. While most have lauded the move, others have argued the need for a change this drastic when there are fresh characters to experiment with.

Read | Dear JK Rowling, I disapprove of the new Hermione, and I am not a racist

Combination image of Emma Watson and Noma Dumezweni

Play soundtrack

One of the most soul-rending elements of Harry Potter movies was its soundtrack. Alexander Desplat’s hauntingly-beautiful symphonies were perfect to elevate the sense of foreboding and lend an ominous and sombre atmosphere to the Deathly Hallows. And one can’t simply forget the magical Hedwig’s Theme by John Williams -- a tune that is now emblematic of the franchise.

This time around, makers have roped in Imogen Heap for The Cursed Child. The woman is a genius with a delicate voice and an admirable list of credits to her name. We can’t wait to find out if the soundtrack will do justice to the play!

Read | Harry Potter and the Cursed Child gets a standing ovation in first preview

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