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From Hamlet To Harry Potter

From Hamlet To Harry Potter

Multi-talented Auckland theatre couple Michael Hurst and Jennifer Ward-Lealand are among the well-known faces and voices who will be reading aloud the latest Harry Potter book, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix at this weekend’s Harry Potter Read Aloud at the Aotea Centre, The Edge®.

Michael, who played Iolaus in the television series, Hercules and recently directed and starred in Hamlet, and Jennifer will read from the book on Saturday afternoon during the event which runs from 10.30am until the book is completed at around 2pm the following day.

The Harry Potter Read Aloud takes place as part of the 10th Annual Storylines Festival of New Zealand Children’s Writers and Illustrators and has been registered as a world record attempt to read aloud the longest children’s book written.

The reading of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix will begin at the official world launch time of 11.01am on Saturday when well-known children’s writer Margaret Mahy is handed the first copy of this much-anticipated book.

At 768 pages and an estimated 255,000 words, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is the longest children’s book ever written and it is predicted to take around 27 hours to read aloud.

Well-known New Zealand children’s writers, illustrators, personalities from the media, television, theatre and sport, together with community leaders have been invited to read sections of the book and scheduled readers also include television news presenters Alison Mau and Simon Dallow, Dame Cath Tizard and favourite children’s personality Suzy Cato.

The Harry Potter Read Aloud will finish as the Storylines Festival Free Family Day gets underway at the Aotea Centre.

Youngsters attending the read aloud are encouraged to dress up as their favourite Harry Potter character and can take part in a game of quidditch (as played in the Harry Potter books and films) on Aotea Square on Sunday 22 June at 2pm. Children are invited to bring their own broomsticks, but unfortunately there is no magic to make them fly!

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