'Harry Potter and the Cursed Child': What will it be about?

'Potter' author J.K. Rowling recently revealed more details about the new play about the boy wizard that's opening in London in 2016. What will the story of the new play be?

Peter Mountain/Warner Bros./AP
'Harry Potter' author J.K. Rowling previously stated that a new play will center on protagonist Harry (here portrayed by Daniel Radcliffe)'s early years.

“Harry Potter” fans will soon be learning a little more about their favorite boy wizard.

According to “Potter” writer J.K. Rowling, a play titled “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child” is coming to London in 2016. As we previously reported, Ms. Rowling announced in 2013 that a “Potter” play was in the works. The author said at the time that “Child” will “explore the previously untold story of Harry’s early years as an orphan and outcast.”

Now Rowling has tweeted more details about the play.

Writer Jack Thorne previously adapted the 2013 vampire film "Let the Right One In" for the stage, among other work. "Child" will be directed by John Tiffany, who also directed the Off-Broadway and Broadway adaptations of the Tony-winning musical "Once" (Mr. Tiffany himself won one of the Tonys for his direction of the show) as well as the 2014 Broadway revival of "The Glass Menagerie."

Rowling’s statement that “Child” is not a prequel is intriguing, especially in light of her previous statement that the play will center on Harry’s childhood.

When readers first meet Harry, he is almost 11 years old and living with his aunt, uncle, and cousin in Britain, unaware that he was born to parents with magical ability. His parents, Lily and James Potter, were killed by the evil wizard Lord Voldemort, but Harry is unaware of this as well (his aunt and uncle tell him his parents died in a car accident).

So presuming this story is still set in Harry’s childhood, what will it be about? As detailed in the first “Potter” book, “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone,” Harry had various strange incidents occur in his early life in which his magical ability manifested itself – for example, when he is running from his cruel cousin Dudley and Dudley’s friends, he is able to jump up to the school roof to escape from them, and when his aunt cuts off all his hair despite his protests, his hair grows back overnight. Perhaps the story will center on one of these incidents – others might view Harry as a “cursed child” if things keep happening to him that no Muggle (non-magical person) can explain. 

Or, of course, the cursed child could be someone else altogether, which seems likely considering Harry is separate from the child in the title. Perhaps the child in question is also a victim of Voldemort or is gifted with magic ability in some way and Harry must help him or her. 

Fans will have to wait until 2016 to find out the particulars of the new “Harry” story.

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