Potterverse inspires ‘Potter Plays’ world premiere in Las Vegas

Dedicated fans waiting — and waiting — and waiting — at their local bookstore for the release of their favorite saga’s grand finale.

Longtime pals pulling the plug on the fantasy fan club they formed in college. With one holdout.

A couple at a crossroads turning to an alternate-universe quiz to help them sort out their problems.

And a pair of jelly beans — named Booger and Vomit — pondering their existence as “The Last Beans in the Box.”

Just some of the colorful characters who pop up in “The Potter Plays,” a compendium of Harry Potter-inspired one-acts debuting at Majestic Repertory Theatre through July 8.

Don’t expect the boy wizard and his pals to battle Lord Voldemort on stage, however.

The eight playlets — subtitled “Unauthorized Tales from the Wizard World” — may be inspired by the adventures of J.K. Rowling’s boy wizard and his friends (and foes) at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, but they don’t focus on Rowling’s characters.

“They’re not fanfiction,” cautions “Potter Plays” director Troy Heard, Majestic’s artistic director. Instead, the plays deal with “the fans and their engagement” with the Potter saga.

The eight “Unauthorized Tales” — intended for mature audiences — were chosen from more than two dozen submitted after Majestic put out a social media call for the short works.

“We could’ve done a play that’s been done a thousand times,” Heard says, “or do something different.”

Half of the “Potter Plays” were created by local writers, including one Las Vegas Academy student; the other winning writers hail from Los Angeles, New Zealand and the Midwest, according to Heard.

LVA senior Julia Dreitzer, 17, wrote “Marauders No More” — about 30-something University of Chicago alumni, all but one of whom realizes “they’re too old to be this into Harry Potter,” she explains. (Their fearless leader, however, remains “in denial.”)

When Dreitzer saw the call for submissions on Facebook, she thought, “ ‘OK, I have to do this,’ “ she admits. (Dreitzer wrote two “Harry Potter”-inspired plays, but only “Marauders” — which “taught me how to write for older audiences” — made it into the “Potter Plays” lineup.)

Eight actors will portray multiple characters, some of whom are definitely on the edge.

In “The Last Beans in the Box,” for example, performers Cory Covell (who’s also Majestic’s production manager) and Noah Keeling play the title characters, Vomit and Booger — the sole survivors from a box of Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Beans, where the flavors range from chocolate and blueberry to farm dirt and earwax.

That particular one-act is “Harry Potter by way of Samuel Beckett,” Heard says of the “absurd” and “existential” playlet.

“It’s just so random,” comments Covell, alias Vomit.

“It’s like my favorite part of doing the show,” Keeling adds. His character Booger is “so messed up in the head; it’s fun to be a little bit crazy.” Not to mention that “I get to put that I played a booger on my resume.”

Clearly, “it’s a magical realm,” Heard says of the Potterverse that inspired “The Potter Plays.”

For starters, “everyone loves a good fantasy,” he says. But “it’s based on human emotions. It’s a perfect coming-of-age story. Not everyone has a happy ending. And it’s a great adventure.”

In short, “a complete hero’s journey.” Even if one hero happens to be named Vomit, not Potter.

Bringing the ‘Potter Plays’ universe to life

A banner from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry hangs suspended over the stage.

Familiar school scarves and wizard-worthy robes provide convincing costuming.

But it’s the intensity that helps bring various “Potter Plays” to life at downtown’s Majestic Repertory Theatre through July 8.

During a recent rehearsal, director Troy Heard observes as cast members run through selected one-acts that make up the world-premiere lineup.

In “Marauders No More,” a group of Potter fans who have been meeting since college discuss “the value and importance of growing up and moving on,” to quote a line of dialogue from Julia Dreitzer’s script. Except for their fearless leader, who can’t believe his friends are deserting him.

And in “7/21/07,” by Steven Korbar, two women line up at their local Barnes & Noble bookstore, trading quips and observations while awaiting the release of author J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter finale, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.”

Chasing young interlopers away, the first-in-line fanatic declares, “I’m going to be the first person in all of Chatsworth to own ‘Deathly Hallows.’ “

As the two women trade comments on their single status — one recalls a disappointing date at a Quidditch fantasy camp — director Troy Heard tells the performers, “There’s a moment we haven’t found yet. What a shock these two women aren’t married.”

And as Evan Baughfman’s “The Last Beans in the Box” contemplate cannibalism (candybalism?) when a fellow jelly bean cracks open, they trade philosophical observations.

“No one is ever truly equal,” one surviving jelly bean tells the other. “That’s the way the world works.”

Contact Carol Cling at ccling@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0272. Follow @CarolSCling on Twitter.

ad-high_impact_4
Entertainment
Get a sneak peak of Palace Station's newest renovations
Station Casinos spokesperson Lori Nelson gives a first look at what Palace Station's $192 million renovation will bring. Some areas will begin opening to the public next week according to Nelson. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
You Can Only Get The 11-pound 8-person Burger In Las Vegas
You Can Only Get The 11-pound 8-person Burger In Las Vegas (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Paul McCartney is worth over $1 billion
Sir Paul McCartney is one of the most celebrated and accomplished musicians in history. He just turned 76 on June 18. McCartney grew to international fame with the Beatles and went on to become a wildly successful solo musician. Paul McCartney’s net worth is estimated at $1.2 billion, according to Celebrity Net Worth. In 2017, McCartney landed the No. 13 spot on Forbes’ list of the world’s highest-paid musicians, earning $54 million for the year. On Thursday, June 20, McCartney will release a double A-side single featuring two new songs, "I Don't Know" and "Come On to Me." McCartney has yet to announce a title of his new album or when it will be released. Th album is expected to be released before he headlines the Austin City Limits Music fest in October.
Bellagio's New Conservatory Brings Italian Summer To Las Vegas
Bellagio's New Conservatory Brings Italian Summer To Las Vegas (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Kari Curletto of Las Vegas put over 500 hours into making her toilet paper wedding dress. (Courtesy Kari Curletto)
Kari Curletto of Las Vegas put over 500 hours into making her toilet paper wedding dress. (Courtesy Kari Curletto)
The Real Crepe In Las Vegas Serves Authentic Crepes In The Style Of Brittany, France
The Real Crepe In Las Vegas Serves Authentic Crepes In The Style Of Brittany, France. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-journal)
New Marilyn Musical Brings Screen Icons Life To Strip
Paris Las Vegas hosts musical bio featuring new, old tunes. (Carol Cling Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Vegas' hottest concerts of the summer
Vegas' hottest concerts of the summer
We Taste-tested The Best Doughnut Shops In Las Vegas
We Taste-tested The Best Doughnut Shops In Las Vegas. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
5 must-see bands at Punk Rock Bowling 2018
5 must-see bands at Punk Rock Bowling 2018
Gabi Coffee & Bakery Is Like A Korean Speakeasy From The 1920s
Gabi Coffee & Bakery Is Like A Korean Speakeasy From The 1920s (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Five must-see acts at the Electric Daisy Carnival 2018
Five must-see acts at the Electric Daisy Carnival 2018
The "13 Reasons Why" mustang cruises down the Las Vegas Strip (Courtesy Netflix)
4 fun and fascinating museums in Las Vegas
U2 in Vegas through the years
U2 in Vegas through the years
Dirt Dog In Las Vegas Makes Crazy L.A. Street Food
Dirt Dog In Las Vegas Makes Crazy L.A. Street Food (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-journal)
Black Tap In Las Vegas Makes This Instagram-ready Golden Knights Shake (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-journal)
Nevada Ballet Theatre Premieres Until December
‘Until December’ debuts at ‘Ballet & Broadway’ season finale (Carol Cling Las Vegas
Celebrate The Golden Knights With Knights-inpired Latte Art (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Yodeling Boy Mason Ramsey Signs With Atlantic Records, Debuts First Single
Yodeling Boy Mason Ramsey Signs With Atlantic Records, Debuts First Single Ramsey, who shot to fame after a viral video of him yodeling at an Illinois Walmart surfaced, just debuted “Famous.” “If I'm gonna be famous for somethin'/I wanna be famous for lovin' you/If I'm gonna be known around the world/I wanna because of you, girl” Mason Ramsey, “Famous” It’s been quite the rush to stardom for the 11-year-old, who appeared on The Ellen Show and performed at Coachella earlier this month. “I’d been to Nashville a few times before, but never thought something like this would happen. It’s a dream to sign with Atlantic and Big Loud.” Mason Ramsey “I loved recording ‘Famous’ and can’t wait for everyone to hear it.”
Steve Aoki, Pitbull And Other Stars Make An Apperance At The "Keep Memory Alive" Gala
Steve Aoki, Pitbull And Other Stars Make An Apperance At The "Keep Memory Alive" Gala. (Janna Karel Las Vegas review-Journal)
"Hamilton" Fans Line Up Overnight At Smith Center To Get Tickets
"Hamilton" fans line up overnight at Smith Center to get tickets. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
5 concerts to see in Las Vegas this week
You can visit the speakeasy in The Mob Museum's basement... if you know the password
6 new foods hitting movie theaters in 2018
Lip Smacking Foodie Tours takes you where the locals go
Donald Contursi talks about Lip Smacking Foodie Tours, which offers walking tours of restaurants on and off Las Vegas Boulevard with food samples and tidbits of history about the places they visit.
Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson Welcomes New Baby Girl!
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson Welcomes New Baby Girl! The 45-year-old actor posted an adorable photo on Instagram, celebrating his newborn baby girl, Tiana Gia Johnson. Dwayne Johnson, via Instagram Dwayne Johnson, via Instagram Dwayne Johnson, via Instagram This is Johnson’s second daughter with his girlfriend, Lauren Hashian. His oldest daughter, Simone Garcia Johnson, came from his previous marriage. Johnson and Hashian first announced they were expecting another child back in January. Congratulations!!
Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekend Car Show celebrates 21st year
The Stray Cats, Jerry Lee Lewis, Duane Eddy, Elvira and Mitch Polzak make appearances the 21st Annual Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekend car show at the Orleans hotel and casino on Saturday, April 21, 2018.
This "Alice in Wonderland" cocktail changes colors and flavors while you sip
Take a tour of The Underground at The Mob Museum
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
ad-infeed_1
ads_infeed_2
Local Spotlight
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like