After wowing audiences on London's West End this summer, the hit stage play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is looking to cross the pond. Producers Sonia Friedman and Colin Callender have revealed they are in "detailed talks" to bring the stage play to a "totally transformed" Lyric Theatre in New York in the spring of 2018. Discussions are said to be in the final stages, with theatre owner Ambassador Theatre Group (ATG) financing a huge multi-million-dollar transformation of the New York's Lyric Theatre. Here's what producer Sonia Friedman had to say about the play's move to Broadway.
"The moment we opened in the West End, the inevitable question was 'when are you going to Broadway? So we brought the creative team to New York in September this year to look at many of the beautiful theatres in New York City."
The producers revealed to Pottermore that the Lyric Theater will be reconfigured from a 1,900-seat theater to a 1,500-seat theater, "to accommodate the dramatic look and feel" of Cursed Child. Sonia Callendar explained that the transformed theater will be just the right size, while continuing to provide affordable tickets for fans. Here's what she had to say in another statement.
"When the redesigned Lyric was presented to us as an idea and what the possibilities could be, we re-thought the whole thing and totally fell in love with the notion of a theatre being created especially for the Cursed Child, overseen by designer Christine and our director John Tiffany. We are still subject to planning, but assuming we get the go ahead, we will have the theatre of our dreams that will be intimate enough for a drama, yet big enough for us to follow in the footsteps of the London production and continue to provide low priced tickets throughout the auditorium."
Production designer Christine Jones, a native New Yorker who created the iconic look of Cursed Child at the Palace Theatre, revealed that she hoped the Lyric Theater will have "its own soul and its own identity" once the transformation is complete. Colin Callender also added that the front of the house will be redesigned, which was a "massive selling point" for this play to come to the Lyric. Here's what he had to say in his statement.
"What's wonderful about the Lyric is that it has very generous public spaces front of house which will allow the audience a place to mingle in a way that's unique in the Broadway landscape."
Sonia Friedman added that having a "large and spacious atmospheric front of house lobby" was just as "crucial" as the actual theater inside. The producer added that she wants the experience to begin for theater-goers as soon as they walk through the front door. Sonia Friedman also spoke about how J.K. Rowling, writer Jack Thorne and director John Tiffany (a.k.a. "the three J's") are feeling about the play's move to America. Here's what she had to say below.
"They are very, very happy. John is going to be crucial and very, very involved with Christine and the rest of the design team on the look, feel, aesthetic and overall feel of the theatre. Jack can't wait to see it, and Jo is fully, fully supportive of the whole venture. Our three Js are as great as ever. It feels like we've only just opened it in London but it's a beautiful feeling being the custodians of this great work - the custodians on behalf of fans. We know we need to bring it to New York as soon as we possibly can."
There have long been rumors that Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is being planned as a movie adaptation as well, but J.K. Rowling has debunked those rumors. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is set several years after Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2, starring Jamie Parker, Noma Dumezweni and Paul Thornley as adult versions of Harry Potter, Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley. Harry is now an "overworked employee" at the Ministry of Magic, along with a husband and father of three young children. His oldest son, Albus is grappling with his family's legacy, while Harry is still struggling with issues from his past.