On ‘Yoof’ in Theatres

A particularly relevant post today, as it coincides with the launch of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child; which must have come to your attention,  unless you’ve been living under rock without contact with the Guardian/The Stage/any form of mainstream media/humanity.

It’s been heralded as the play to attract a younger audience into our theatres – the majority of ticket holders to Cursed Child are, I believe, under 35 – and I bloody well hope so. Or, as the brilliant lady I was sat next to today put it, ‘we’ll (i.e. all the oldies) will die and what then?’

I had a great view of the stalls today – but what else does one expect for six quid – and there were more grey and white heads than in a barrister’s wig shop. And to be surrounded by that lot was, quite frankly, terrifying. I remember the first play that I saw on my lonesome was more inappropriate and had more euphemisms than expected, so I spent most of my time curled up cringing and fervently hoping that I wouldn’t meet anyone I knew.

I’m past that now, of course. Today I made conversation! I didn’t fall over! I am functioning as a human being! I do love talking to all these different people, but still, it would be a change to not be hit with a sea of brilliant white as soon as I step out of the theatre.

So let’s hope that this new Harry Potter installation will breathe life not just into the theatre industry overall, but also script printers (even Waterstones didn’t have Sarah Kane’s complete plays today, FOR CRYING OUT LOUD) and my social life. Seriously, the only times I leave the house are when I go to the theatre, and although myself and the railway guy who sells me tickets have now struck up a patter, it would be nice to have a conversation with someone under the age of 20. Or even 60.

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