Acclaimed children’s laureate (2003 to 2005), Michael Morpurgo wrote best selling novel War Horse in 1982 and since then, the celebrated tale has been adapted into film by Steven Spielberg, nominated for six Oscar awards and adapted into a play by Nick Stafford.
Formerly Morpurgo thought, "they must be mad" to try to make a theatrical play based on his novel, however this skepticism was quickly thwarted with the play’s success.
Nick Stafford brought the novel to life through marvelous puppetry by South Africa's Handspring Puppet Company of life-size horses to represent the central horse character, Joey, with a skeletal essence in the modeling. Both movements and sounds deliver a spectacle not to be missed.
The story is set during the outbreak of World War I and young Albert Narracott's treasured horse, Joey, is sold to the troops and shipped to France. Joey journeys through WWI serving in British and German armies and making friends with another army horse, Topthorn. Joey takes an astonishing passage battling through disease and illness, then finally finds himself in no mans land. All the while, Albert is helpless to forget his comrade Joey, and underage of the requirements of joining the army, embarks on a risky duty to bring back Joey to Devon.
On Saturday 14th July 2012, reporters Sophia and Zoe talked to attendees finding out what their opinions were of the production and how they thought cinema and theatrical adaptation differ in delivering the well-loved novel.