Potted Potter — the Unauthorised Harry Experience, a Parody by Dan and Jeff
By Daniel Clarkson and Jefferson Turner
Heath Ledger Theatre
Having been a Harry Potter tragic for more than half my life, I'd be lying if I didn't admit I was more than a little sceptical about subjecting myself to a parody of J.K. Rowling's magical series.
I was even more concerned when I took my seat next to an eight year old and surveyed the theatre to discover the average age of the audience was nearing my shoe size.
Admittedly, the show did take a while to warm up, with actors Jesse Briton and Gary Trainor's banter rather forced in the first ten minutes. However, when the lads got stuck into it, what ensued was roughly 70 minutes of unadulterated adulation for the boy wizard and a hilarious romp through the seven books.
British comedians Daniel Clarkson and Jefferson Turner originally performed a five-minute version of Potted Potter at a London bookshop to coincide with the release of the sixth book in 2005. Since then, the show has evolved into a full stage show and toured the world to wide acclaim.
Briton and Trainor were infectious with their squeaky brand of comedy reminiscent of Hamish and Andy. Trainor played the straitlaced Harry Potter expert, donning round specs to take on the title role for much of the show. But Briton stole the limelight as almost all of the other characters, from Snape to an Ali G-esque Ron Weasley - making use of a series of comical wigs, hats and props.
The feather in the show's magical cap was easily a live quidditch match involving the entire audience (most notably one over-eager mother towards the front).
Despite a handful of Potter in-jokes, you didn't have to be a fan of the series to enjoy the show (there's also a range of pop-culture references including Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, the Chronicles of Narnia, Shrek, Mary Poppins and Twilight).
At its core is something, dare I say, more important than Harry Potter - fun.Potted Potter ends on Sunday.
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