Potted Potter – The Unauthorised Harry Experience, A Parody by Dan and Jeff
Opera House until November 4
Reviewed by Ewen Coleman
Even for those with limited or no knowledge of the exploits of Harry Potter, Potted Potter – The Unauthorised Harry Experience is still a very entertaining show.
This is mainly due to the great rapport that the two performers Gary Trainor and Jesse Briton have with each other and their knowledge of all seven Harry Potter books.
Trainor is the more serious one of the two and is the Harry Potter expert although book seven is his favourite and the one he wants to keeping telling the audience about.
Briton is the more madcap one, full of silly antics and Trainor's fall guy. He was entrusted with finding 20 top class actors to play the more than 300 characters but squanders the money on cheap props and keeps trying to introduce his favourite character, a dragon, into the proceedings.
And so through these inter linking running gags they dip into each of the seven books touching lightly on the majority of characters in each and summing up the essential story line of each book.
The connection through each of course is Harry's good wizardry defeating Lord Voldemort's dark wizardry and the complicated twists and turns that Harry and his friends Ron and Hermione have to go through to defeat Voldemort.
Using a variety of hats and a few props, Trainor and Briton act out each book in 10 minutes or so at a frenetic pace, often slapstick in style, much to the delight of the younger members of the audience, but never such that it becomes too silly or stupid.
And the presentation of each book is staged in a slightly different way adding much variety to the overall show.
A very creative power point presentation is used for book three – Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – while the game of Quidditch, the World Cup of which opens book four – Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – is actually played by the audience. Divided into teams of Gryffindors and Slytherins they had great fun tossing the globe about and of course the two Seekers, volunteers from the audience, ended the game by catching the Golden Snitch.
The highlight of the show, though, was the final book Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows sung to a well-known tune which ended the show on an upbeat note, making this a very entertaining piece of theatre, even for the Harry Potter purists.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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