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5 reasons to attend Universal Studios Hollywood's new 'Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle' nighttime light show

By Katie Aiani
Universal Studios Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle light show

Whether you're a Death Eater sporting your Dark Mark proudly or want to help defend Hogwarts Castle from a variety of invaders, Universal Studios' new "Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle" light show is for you. This show, the third to take place in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter section of the park, will set fire to a whole new set of emotions using effects absent from the previous two light shows.

"We're really maintaining that magical quality of everything that is the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and now we're able to portray those darker undertones of the Wizarding World," Stephen Siercks, senior director of entertainment production at Universal Studios Hollywood, tells SYFY WIRE of developing this new show. 

Here are 5 reasons to witness the Dark Arts in action for yourself by visiting Universal Studios Hollywood to watch the new "Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle" nighttime light show!

You can visit Universal Studios Hollywood to watch the new "Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle" show each night, starting now through Sunday, April 28th. The show will also return for an encore performance from May 25th to 27th.

Learn more about the event on Universal Studios Hollywood's website.

Wizarding World of Harry Potter Hogwarts light show

01. Drones, flames, and fog!

State of the art projection mapping technology onto Hogwarts castle continues to be the main attraction of the show, but now fans are rewarded with large jets of flames, dozens of LED-lit aerial drones creating a multi-dimensional Patronus Charm, and chilling fog effects to truly help immerse visitors in the Dark Arts.

Wizarding World of Harry Potter Hogwarts light show

02. Dumbledore is back!

Harry Potter fans will have all the feels when they hear the school's beloved Headmaster's voice resonate over the Wizarding World once again with a new audio quote to open the show, and to assure us in the end that “Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.”

Universal Studios Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle light show

03. Fantastic Beasts and when to watch for them!

Look closely throughout the show. Did you find all the magical creatures? Thestrals, Trolls, Acromantulas, and Dementors represent the darker creatures surrounding Hogwarts Castle in the show.

Observant fans of the Harry Potter series will also spot some Inferi (corpses that have been reanimated by a dark wizard), and Devil's Snare (a deadly constricting plant) also make their way up to ensnare the castle walls.

Universal Studios Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle light show

04. Music, “A magic beyond all we do here!”

As professor Dumbledore once said, "Music is a magic beyond all we do here," and this show is no exception.

The new show features a special musical arrangement by William Ross, performed by the London Symphony Orchestra and recorded at the world famous Abbey Road Studios. It has a dark, raw energy that compliments the original scores composed by John Williams for the Harry Potter film series that fans hold so close to their hearts.

Universal Studios Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle light show

05. “He will rise again and will come for us."

As the Dark Mark symbol rises high on the top of Hogwarts Castle, Volde… I mean He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, often referred to as "The Dark Lord" by his Death Eater followers, is featured in The Wizarding World at Universal Studios Hollywood for the very first time.

His haunting voice echoes through the village of Hogsmeade, sending chills down every witch and wizard’s spine as he makes threats and casts an unforgivable curse to destroy Hogwarts Castle!