If you happen to be in London anytime soon, you might want to set one evening aside to
take in the revival of the psychological thriller Equus, starring Harry Potter’s all grown up star,
Daniel Radcliffe, says OutUK's Duane Wells .
In Peter Shaffer’s psychological drama, Equus, Daniel Radcliffe, who is best known for his big screen embodiment
of the young wizard Harry Potter, plays troubled teenager Alan Strang, a seemingly perfectly normal
seventeen-year who is placed under psychiatric observation after he blinds six horses with a hoof pick.
Over the course of the play, Radcliffe is not only seen nude but also masturbating while on a horse.
All of which couldn’t be further away from the family friendly fare upon which
the young actor has engaged a legion of loyal adolescent and teenage fans. Thankfully, so far, reaction to
the heart-throb’s risky career choice has been nothing but favourable.
According to Reuters, Racliffe won a standing ovation on opening night at Shaftesbury Avenue's
Gielgud Theatre and fellow actors like Christian Slater who came to watch were full of praise
for his courage in taking on such a grueling role.
In the same interview, Radcliffe confessed to having first night nerves but said he had
no qualms about baring all after two weeks of doing the play in previews.
"After the first couple of previews, I didn't really care anymore," he told Reuters Television.
Asked about all the publicity over his nude scenes, he said "It all seemed to imply
the nudity was gratuitous which it isn't at all." Gratuitous or not, however, the
buzz over Radcliffe’s nude form has helped to generate nearly millions of pounds worth
of advance sales for the production.
Richard Griffiths, who plays Potter’s evil uncle Vernon Dursley in the Harry
Potter films, joins Radcliffe in what has been called “a dark and sinister exploration of
adolescent obsession” playing the sympathetic psychiatrist Martin Dysart to whom the
troubled teen turns for treatment in the play.
Equus was originally staged in 1973 by the National Theatre, and featured Peter
Firth and Alec McCowen in the roles of Strang and Dysart. On transferring to Broadway
it collected a Tony Award. Equus was subsequently made into a film in 1977 starring
Richard Burton, Firth, Eileen Atkins, Joan Plowright and Jenny Agutter.
Equus is scheduled to run at the Gielgud Theatre
in London’s West End until June 9th.