Harry Potter and the Cursed Child opened at the Palace Theatre last night... and there was a conspicuous lack of children.
Maybe it was because it was a school night, but the most hotly-anticipated show of the year seemed a Muggle-heavy affair, with barely a witch or wizard costume in sight.
We had to scour the waiting crowds for a good 10 minutes before we found a pair who kindly agreed to wave their wands in our direction. They were not children:
After being snapped, our excited mother/son wizards — who told us they'd queued online for hours to score their tickets — ran off to join the queues snaking around the back of theatre. Bag checks are in operation and they do NOT look fun.
So why the muted response?
Perhaps because it was a Tuesday. Perhaps because it was only night number one in a whole SEVEN WEEKS of previews. Or perhaps the mania only kicked in once people took their seats (alas, we didn't have a ticket).
We'll find out for ourselves on press night, on 30 July. As fans will appreciate, this is a nice touch from team Rowling, as it also happens to be Harry Potter's birthday.
Although there's not much mania on the streets of central London, where tickets sales are concerned, things are crazy — the latest 175,000 snapped up in 24 hours, and the top resale price currently being reported as £2,000.
On 31 July the play script goes on sale, so perhaps we'll see some real action then. During the heady days of the books' various publications dates in the late 00s, trails of robed and hatted tweens lined up outside shops to get their sticky hands on the latest copies. We'd like to see more of that.
Then again, like Harry himself those same tweens are now in their 20s and 30s so perhaps it not surprising they're not quite so keen nowadays to dress up as Dobby, Hagrid, Ron, Hermione et al. Life isn't all chocolate frog cards and invisibility cloaks, you know.
One thing's for sure — the story's surprises have been just as closely guarded as ever before. JK Rowling has posted an impassioned if optimistic plea on YouTube for fans to #keepthesecrets.
There will still be a chance for fans to buy tickets for shows post May 2017 however. Read our how to guide here.