Universal Fans Rejoice Over Wizarding World of Harry Potter Update!

a death eater in front of hogwarts castle
Credit: Fox News Orlando 35

Universal Studios fans are elated about the return of this spectacular nighttime performance at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, teased in a new theme park update.

Though not exactly as large as the two-park Wizarding World at Universal Studios Florida, the smaller version at Universal Studios Hollywood in Southern California still goes a long way to providing magic to fans of the Harry Potter series and films! While Universal Studios Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure boast two separate themed lands within its Resort complex, both Hogsmeade and the Hogwarts grounds and Diagon Alley, accessible by the Hogwarts Express, the West Coast version offers just one all-immersive experience.

wizarding world of harry potter universal studios orlando

Credit: Park Savers

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At Hollywood’s Wizarding World, Guests can step into a snowy scene straight out of the Warner Bros. Discovery films, adapted from the children’s series about a wizard boy who goes to a magic school by controversial conservative author J.K. Rowling. Still, the setting and its characters still hold a lot of meaning to nostalgic adults and new younger fans alike, and no other place offers the chance to experience the magic so in-depth!

For example, Universal Studios Hollywood debuted the Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts performance, which utilized music, pyrotechnics, projection mapping, and other special effects to transform the school and its surrounding night skies. Later, the Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle, a more advanced production with edgier themes centered around the story’s central Wizarding War conflict, debuted to great success on both coasts.

Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle

Credit: Universal Studios

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As described in Attractions Magazine:

As darkness cloaks Hogsmeade Village, the façade of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry will be overtaken by Dementors, Death Eaters, Inferi, and even the image of Lord Voldemort himself during a projection and special effects show accompanied by a musical score from iconic Harry Potter composer John Williams.

However, the show entered an extended hiatus four years ago to the disappointment of Guests, who especially enjoyed scenes with the floating Patronus in its finale. Luckily, Universal Studios has announced that the Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle show will return to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter for a limited time!

Wizarding World of Harry Potter: What's different in Hollywood?

Credit: USA Today

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Beginning March 25, 2023, the Dark Arts show will have performance times as early as dusk and continue until Park close from March 25 to April 9, 2023, May 27 to May 29, 2023, and June 17 until August 13, 2023. Watch an exclusive feature of the effects from Attractions Magazine below as you prepare to return to Hogwarts for the Dark Arts:


About Spencer Johnette

Spencer is a lifelong lover of theme parks, princesses, and Disney history that recently relocated to Northern California. She completed her undergraduate studies at UCLA, where she was the founder and first president of the campus Disney Club. A former Cast Member still mourning the loss of the Disney Store, she now haunts the Walt Disney Family Museum halls and shares her opinions with anyone who will listen @gothelsflower.