‘Cursed Child’ casts spell over Asia

The Myanmar Times - - The Pulse -

HARRY Pot­ter magic hit Asia yes­ter­day morn­ing, as as­pir­ing witches and wizards crowded into book­stores to get their hands on the first copies of a new play that imag­ines the hero as an adult.

Launch par­ties for Harry Pot­ter and the Cursed Child were held hours af­ter the play’s pre­miere in Lon­don, set­ting the stage for a re­turn of the series that has cap­ti­vated read­ers and movie au­di­ences world­wide.

Nearly 300 fans rushed through the doors of Ki­noku­niya book­store on Sin­ga­pore’s Or­chard Road at 7:01am to be­come one of the first peo­ple in the world to see the new script.

Stu­dent Sa­man­tha Chua, 24, who along with her boyfriend was first in line, said she had been wait­ing out­side the fourth-floor book­store since 5am.

“We were here so early that the mall wasn’t even open yet so we had to come up through the cargo lifts,” she told AFP, adding that it was “all worth it”.

“I grew up read­ing the books and I have a spe­cial place for them on my shelves but this will be my crown­ing glory,” added Chua, who was wear­ing a Harry Pot­ter-themed sweater.

Widely seen as the eighth Harry Pot­ter in­stal­ment, the play is set 19 years af­ter the end of the last book and fea­tures a grown-up Pot­ter work­ing at the Min­istry of Magic.

Like many of his fans, Pot­ter has now be­come an adult, and has three chil­dren with his wife Ginny Weasley.

The script’s global kick-off was timed to co­in­cide with its launch at mid­night in Lon­don, af­ter the play’s world pre­miere at the Palace Theatre ear­lier in the evening. July 31 is also au­thor JK Rowl­ing’s birth­day.

In Sin­ga­pore, some fans held a prize-giv­ing cer­e­mony and a hunt for the Snitch – a type of ball used in the wizard sport of Quid­ditch in the Pot­ter books.

Oth­ers were spot­ted sit­ting in nooks around the store eagerly por­ing over the book.

In Bangkok, around 40 fans, many wield­ing wands and other wizard­ing para­pher­na­lia, gath­ered out­side a large down­town mall overnight.

San­pipat Huang­sawat, 29, was first in line and had started queu­ing at 6:30pm on July 30 evening. He fi­nally got his hand on the book some 11 hours later.

“I feel very ex­cited and it’s great to be the first owner of this book in Thai­land,” he told AFP.

Dozens gath­ered at a down­town book­store in Hong Kong to get the new ti­tle and try on Harry Pot­ter cos­tumes pro­vided by the store.

Ten-year-old Adele Le­ung, who came with her mother, was anx­ious to crack into the latest Pot­ter tome.

“I love Harry Pot­ter and have read all of the last ones. I think I will read it in a few days,” she said. –

Photo: AFP

The tiger, who has fa­thered 20 cubs, is con­sid­ered the most fa­mous big cat in In­dia.

Pho­tos: AFP

A cus­tomer reads a copy of Harry Pot­ter and the Cursed Child on the day of its re­lease at a book­store in Hong Kong.

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