On Wednesday, I treated myself to a trip to Oxford to see War Horse at the New Theatre. I saw it years ago in London but always said I’d go again and this summer I had the chance! If you haven’t seen it yet a. WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN? and b. check out the website for future show dates and locations (including Australia!)
The show roughly follows Michael Morpurgo’s book (of the same name) about a boy and his horse during WWI. The story is compelling and grounding but it is the life size puppets that play the horses (and other animals) that really make it. Each full size horse is controlled by three people and they truly act like horses – moving their ears, flicking their tails and accurately walking, trotting and galloping.
So if you are not yet convinced, here are 5 reasons to go and see it:
- Starting with the serious point – I believe everyone should have a general awareness of WWI so that we don’t forget the past and don’t repeat the past.
- The puppets are INCREDIBLE, not only do they move like real horses and convey their emotion but they also carry actual humans!
- There is singing but not in a “proper musical” kind of level, just enough for effect.
- The moving backdrop, the lights, the sound and the prop work is SO clever and effective.
- Although it is pretty hard hitting, there are some really funny bits – watch out for the regional accents and references as well as the goose.
I will say no more, go and see it yourself.
No photography is allowed in the theatre so this image is credited to War Horse on Stage