According to Broadway.com, “Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Experience,” a parody of the famous Harry Potter series, will be arriving in New York this upcoming summer 2012 for a run off-Broadway.
This two-man show, starring its creators, Daniel Clarkson and Jefferson Turner, retells the entire seven book series, running for about 70 minutes total. This brief, but detailed, parody has received positive reviews thus far, after several successful runs in London and Toronto.
Clarkson and Turner, both former children’s BBC hosts, worked with the show’s producer and potential investors to secure a summer-time run at the Little Shubert Theatre on 42nd Street.
Producer Corey Ross hoped to open “Potted Potter” by the time school vacations have begun. Well, Ross, get ready for that mad rush of students on summer vacation — opening night is set for June 3, and the show will run through August 12.
According to the New York Times, the Little Shubert Theatre has not had many successful runs recently. Two recent shows, “Lucky Guy” and “Dracula,” did not do well with critics or at the box office. There is hope that the Harry Potter parody will fare better with its world-wide popularity, not to mention its short running time.
The show’s opening at the Little Shubert will mark its debut United States performance. Clarkson and Turner have been performing versions of the show for six years, according to the New York Times. “Potted Potter” has been performed in various locations, including theater festivals and more professional venues.
According to the Chicago Tribune, the production played multiple stints in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. The show’s previous performances have “met with strong reviews and robust sales,” said Gordon Cox of the Tribune, especially the London engagement, for which the show received an Olivier nomination.
“Potted Potter” played a 2011 summer engagement at London’s Garrick Theatre as part of a United Kingdom National tour. From there, it moved on to a limited engagement in Toronto. Broadway.com says, “This critically acclaimed show, which has made audiences aged six to Dumbledore (who is very old indeed) roar with laughter all over the world, is suitable for the whole family, including grown-ups, Muggles and Squibs.”
The two actors recreating the magical world of Harry Potter “play multiple characters and zip in and out of song numbers, costumes, and their own version of a quidditch tournament (which involves audience participation,” according to the New York Times. Many Potter fans long to experience the broom-flying game in which so many popular scenes of the story take place. These fans will undoubtedly enjoy this interactive aspect of the show.
“Potted Potter” is not the first parody of the Harry Potter series to be created. Before landing his role as Blaine on the hit FOX TV show “Glee,” Darren Criss starred in “A Very Potter Musical” at the University of Michigan in 2009. This parody became an online sensation, leaving Criss widely known even before he caught his big break.
With preview performances starting May 19 and its opening night set, the Olivier Award-nominated actors are ready to hit the stage. The show will be directed by Richard Hurst, with set design by Simon Scullion and lighting design by Tim Mascall.