More than 100,000 spectators have so far watched the performances of “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child” in Hamburg. Tickets for the new season from November 2022 to the end of March 2023 are now on sale.
Only broken five wands
With “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child”, only five magic wands have broken since its premiere last December. Fantastic: Because there is breathless turbulence on stage. The ensemble must be fit so that everyone can endure. A warm-up before each performance is mandatory and has it all. “Sport is super important in relation to this show because it’s just incredibly exhausting what we do here on eight shows a week,” says Movement Captain Felicitas Bauer Flying to the dance numbers.
The term “warming up” is almost a bit of an understatement for these strenuous exercises. Strength training, fitness and yoga are mandatory before each performance – for all 36 actors. Always. “This is how you gather before the show and create a group feeling. On this show, you have to get together. And you can do that in the warm-up,” says her colleague Benjamin Merkel.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child: There is no magic without timing
The pointers need a high degree of concentration, Merkel adds. Anyone who has been there signs it right away. The actions on stage are fast, precise, without pause, almost breathless, many costume changes and without proper timing – no magic. Everything must fit.
There is also yoga so that the actors can mentally follow the long shows. “Learn to concentrate your mind on something and to let external circumstances go, to really focus on one thing.” Special concentration is required for this show. Yoga is great for cultivating this, Merkel says.
The two movement trainers are also present in the play. Felicitas Bauer as the cool witch Polly Chapman who comes to Hogwarths the same year as Harry Potter’s son. And Benjamin Merkel is a “swing”: he says he is, so to speak, the jack of all trades. He knows many roles from the ensemble, including the small supporting roles, and can thus “replace everything one can on stage. And I am also an understudy for Scorpius.”
Of course, there is always a certain amount of stress. You never know what to expect, but it never gets boring that way. Even during the Corona period, the actors met via video calls for fitness training. Until the rehearsals finally got underway again.
Extensive maintenance of the 560 costumes in Mehr! Theater in Hamburg
Almost every day, many of the 560 costumes are ironed, 100 different wig styles and 60 magic capes are protected. Tickets are expensive: From just under 100 euros to almost 280 euros in row 4 in the stalls – depending on when you go. It also shocks some viewers, but apparently deters very few. In the end, according to the audience, the five-hour performance was worth the money: “It costs something, but overall it was worth it. You could see that it was very elaborate: the costumes, the actors, there is a lot behind it. that, ”says one of the happy visitors.
The audience travels from Görlitz, from Thuringia, from Mainz, from Frankfurt, from Bavaria, from Brandenburg, from Dresden. Some have finally redeemed their 2019 Christmas present, many had to leave the tickets they had bought in a drawer for two years because the theater was closed during the pandemic. Maybe that’s why the audience’s glasses turn a little pink with relief over finally being there.
After the performance, there is certainly enthusiasm – especially among those who have had direct contact with the “Lord” (the one whose name may not be mentioned). One visitor enthusiastically recounts, “The whole setting, it was like magic. We sat in the front row, it was especially exciting.” You experienced every single detail there in a particularly impressive way and got water off the stage. “And then Voldemort walked past you, it was impressive!