Twitter has its uses. Oh yes. “Retweet this for your chance to win tickets to War Horse !” said VUE. The touring production at the Jubilee Auditorium. I re-tweeted it without a thought. And that evening after work (because I’m one of those people who puts her phone away during work hours), I got a reply that I had WON. Two tickets, to Opening Night. Of War Horse.
So I invited my Take a Bite director Amy (who’d already seen it in New York!), and I got VERY dressed up — and was shocked at how overdressed I felt on seeing everyone there. Let’s leave that for another post, hmm?
I was slightly afraid that having heard so much about this show already, having seen photos of the puppets, I wouldn’t be as moved by it…or alternatively I’d be washing my own makeup down my face.
But…as I posted earlier, it turned out to be true…this is one of those shows that is perfect.
I actually didn’t cry that much because, I think, I was just in awe.
No in-depth analysis–I believe War Horse is beyond that. But I really recall three things:
1) I normally detest title cards — it’s like I’m being told instead of shown, or, in a historical show, like this, the dates projected onscreen tell me how I should be feeling. But not so in this show. When the words “October 1918” appeared, I sighed in relief…”Thank God, the war is almost over…”
2) You’d think the horses — the puppets, that is — would overtake everything. But even in the scenes where the horses weren’t onstage, I never thought: “People. Boring. Where are the horsies?” EVERYTHING about this show — the script, the acting, the costumes, the staging of this massive touring show — were all bang on.
3) No denying, this show is what it is because of the puppets. There is nothing else like them. At the curtain call, when all the human actors came out, I was applauding, but also regretting that we wouldn’t see the horses take a bow because all their operators must be onstage. Except I was wrong — Joey and Topthorn came out, and took their bows too, and the audience went nuts, because the horses were so REAL to us. Everyone who built, moved, and did the choreography of those horses…they are geniuses, every one.
I need to read the book and movie, I do. But for the love of heaven, everybody on earth, SEE THIS ONSTAGE.