Friday, July 28, 2006


Sounds like a Harry Potter-world spell, no? Something to transform a person into a horse or something? Of course, it's the brilliant Peter Shaffer play, which Harry Potter film star Daniel Radcliffe will take the lead in on the West End next year. I applaud the guy for wanting to take it on, but Equus is a tough play, and the part Radcliffe will take, Alan Strang, is a tough part--he's a pyschologically troubled teen who blinds six horses with a metal spike one night in London. The play was inspired by a real-life event where just such a thing happened, although Shaffer took nothing but that description in writing the play. The bulk of the play focuses on a psychiatrist's attempts to figure out why the boy blinded the horses, and it gets a bit freaky by the end. (The psychiatrist is to be played by Richard Griffiths - the actor who played Uncle Vernon in the films!!) I did it in college (I had a minor role--Dalton, the stable owner whose horses are blinded), and it's great theater, but, as written, it calls for nudity in the last scenes (the character of Alan and a girl he is on a date with strip to have sex, Alan for the first time). We skipped over the nudity by having our actors only strip to underwear, but it sounds like Potter will be up on stage flag a' flying. The Potter films, while great fun, make it hard to judge Radcliffe's talents - I really couldn't even hazard a guess as to whether he's got the talent to really do the role justice, but here's hoping.

Until Whenever

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