Erin Roche is a graduate of Columbia College Chicago with a degree in Vocal Performance, a strong theater background, and an even stronger desire to showcase the best that Chicago talent has to offer.
Photo courtesy of THE WINZENGAMOT: A HARRY POTTER DEBATE.
Review: THE WIZENGAMOT: A HARRY POTTER DEBATE!
By Erin Roche
First off: I’d like to announce that I’m a huge Harry Potter aficionado. I threw an incredibly detailed Harry Potter Halloween party last year, complete with a Moaning Myrtle above the toilet, floating candles in my “Great Hall,” and actual chocolate frogs. I’ve read all of the books. Several times. I dressed up as Luna Lovegood to see the final movie. I know into which House I am sorted (thanks, Pottermore).
As I ascended the stairs at Under the Gun Theater for THE WIZENGAMOT: A HARRY POTTER DEBATE!, I was pleased to find my people, my fellow HP fanatics. There was a (maybe 10-years old) Luna Lovegood, complete with radish earrings. There was a Lucius Malfoy, a proud Slytherin, a young Harry Potter. The bar catered to our whimsical nature with drinks like Firewhiskey and The Dirty Weasley–(to all the Muggles out there: Fireball and a Whiskey/Ginger Ale). We took our seats, myself donning a Slytherin scarf and my date a Gryffindor hat to denote our houses, and reveled in our friendly rivalry. Every single audience member knew their house and cheered for their team (Finally a debate that will delight you instead of making you nauseous).
A Ravenclaw Wizard and a Slytherin witch take the stage of the high wizarding court, The Wizengamot, and debate important topics such as, “Which character shouldn’t have died, and why?” and “Which Hogwarts student would make the best roommate?” Audience members are encouraged to put forth their own opinions and answers, into the Red Solo Cup of Fire, and the Muggle Liaison deliberates the responses and assigns additional house points accordingly. I laughed, I cheered, I applauded! We scribbled with vigor as to why Neville Longbottom would make the best Minister for Magic and as to why Hedwig’s was an unnecessary death. I smiled so genuinely at the shared love the entire room has for a timeless and awe-inspiring story.
My only regret was that I didn’t come in full dress robes. With new questions every week, it’s a continuously new treat for Potterheads of any age. After seven straight weeks of attendance under his belt, fellow audience member Daniel remarks, “I’ve never been more bemused.” Come with a happy heart and a love of magic.
THE WIZENGAMOT: A HARRY POTTER DEBATE! runs ever Sunday at 6 p.m. through December 11th. Tickets are $15 and can be purchased by visiting Under The Gun Theater. or calling the box office at 773-270-3440