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Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Potter Experience

Harry Potter fans young and old will enjoy the limited Off Broadway run of this spoof about the popular book and movie series.

Time Out Ratings

<strong>Rating: </strong>4/5

A year after the (sob!) final Harry Potter movie came out, there's a new reason for fans to wave their wands in the air and celebrate. Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Potter Experience, a hit show from London that's playing at the Little Shubert Theatre through August 12, will thrill anyone who has ever stayed up late practicing transfiguration spells under the covers. Billed as "all seven books performed in 70 minutes," the two-man show isn't quite that literal; it's more like an improv-comedy troupe's on-the-fly spoof, using nothing more elaborate than stuffed animals, cheap wigs and melting chocolate to portray dozens of characters and creatures from the beloved series.

Jefferson Turner plays "Jeff," an adorably sincere Potter expert who becomes increasingly exasperated as he explains the arcane plot twists to "Dan," played by cocreator Daniel Clarkson. Dan is the goofball of the duo, mixing up details from Lord of the Rings and Narnia with Potter lore and trying to represent Hogwarts with two warthogs on a skateboard. Judging by the decibel level of delighted shrieks, the high point of the show is definitely the Quidditch match that involves the entire audience, a beach ball and two very lucky children who are invited onstage to chase the Snitch (Jeff in gold lam and a Bob the Builder hat). If your kids adore Harry Potter, they'll laugh their little Muggle heads off and devour all the inside jokes; if you're an indulgent parent who doesn't know a bludger from a boggart, you'll still get a giggle out of the duo's unbridled enthusiasm. Heck, if you're a Potterhead yourself, add an extra star to the rating above; if not, well, it is only 70 minutes long.

plays at the Little Shubert Theatre through Aug 12.

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