WAR HORSE Announces Final Extension in the West End, New Fall 2017 UK Tour

After eight record breaking years, the National Theatre has announced the final extension of its West End run of War Horse, with a last performance at the New London Theatre scheduled for 12 March 2016.

WAR HORSE will have played over 3,000 performances and been seen by over 2.7 million people in London, and over seven million people worldwide; it has won 25 awards including the Tony Award for Best Play on Broadway. Directed by Marianne Elliott and Tom Morris, Nick Stafford's adaptation of Michael Morpurgo's story about a boy and his horse set against the backdrop of the First World War is the most successful play in the National Theatre's history.

Additionally, a major UK tour of War Horse will begin in autumn 2017, as the country prepares to mark the final centenary year of the First World War, with details to be announced.

WAR HORSE received its world premiere on 9 October 2007 at the National Theatre, where it played for two seasons before opening at the New London Theatre in March 2009. Since then, War Horse has been seen in 97 cities in 10 countries, including productions on Broadway, in Toronto and Berlin, with touring productions in the UK and Ireland, North America, the Netherlands and Belgium. Most recently a Chinese-language production opened in Beijing which moves to Shanghai later this year.

Producer Chris Harper said: 'WAR HORSE has wowed audiences around the world, and we are incredibly proud of what the show has achieved over the last eight extraordinary years. It has been a privilege to bring Michael Morpurgo's beloved novel to the stage and to share this beautiful story of love and friendship with audiences. At the heart of War Horse is Joey, the life-size puppet horse, who has become an unlikely star, enchanting and moving audiences of all ages. I'd like to extend a special thank you to the incredible cast and crew who bring the show to life night after night; and we look forward to celebrating the final six months in London before galloping off on tour in 2017.'

Michael Morpurgo added: 'Great things from small beginnings grow. Tom Morris and Marianne Elliott dared to take a children's book about a horse and a boy in the First World War, and make a play of it with puppets. But what puppets! Between them, the National Theatre and Handspring Puppet Company have transformed the use of puppetry in theatre. They wove into their play the design of Rae Smith, the music of Adrian Sutton and John Tams, glorious lighting and sound, and spent two risky years putting the show together. The result, after a stuttering start, was an iconic play, but not simply a play, certainly not a musical, a show like no other, with puppets at its heart. It has moved millions in London and all over the world.'

WAR HORSE is directed by Marianne Elliott and Tom Morris, designed by Rae Smith, with puppet direction, design and fabrication by Basil Jones and Adrian Kohler for Handspring Puppet Company, lighting by Paule Constable, and movement and horse choreography by Toby Sedgwick, with video design by Leo Warner and Mark Grimmer, songmaker John Tams, music by Adrian Sutton and sound by Christopher Shutt.

A special series of platforms will be scheduled to celebrate the final six months of War Horse in London.

The West End cast comprises James Backway (Albert Narracott), Phillip Bertioli (Joey/Topthorn Heart), Ken Bradshaw (Priest/Gefreiter Karl), Adrian Christopher (Topthorn Head), Matthew Churcher (Joey/Topthorn Hind), Clare Louise Connolly (Baby Joey/Emilie), Alasdair Craig (Friedrich Muller), Harry De Moraville (Thomas Bone), Drew Dillon (Goose/Klebb), James Duncan (Joey/Topthorn Head), Nick Figgis (Dr Schweyk/Vet Martin), Patrick Fleming (Rudi), Keiran Flynn (Sergeant Fine/Col Strauss), Alan Francis (Sergeant Thunder), Colm Gormley (Ted), Dominic Hodson (Captain Nicholls), Ian Houghton (Sergeant Allan/Manfred), Mark Jackson (Captain Stewart), Simon Jenkins (Billy Narracott/Ludwig), Jamie Lee-Morgan (Joey Head), Nyron Levy (Topthorn Heart), Kate Marlais (Annie Gilbert), Shaun McCourt (Joey Hind), Tony McGeever (David Taylor), Jayne Mckenna (Rose Narracott), Chris Milford (Joey Heart), Gary Mitchinson (Joey/Topthorn Hind), Thomas Mittleheuser (Ensemble), Ben Murray (Songman/Sentry Shaw), Markus Schabbing (Joey/Topthorn Head), Adam Henderson Scott (John Greig/Geordie), Alisdair Simpson (Chapman Carter/Soldat Schmidt), James Alexander Taylor (Joey/Topthorn Heart), Emma Thornett (Baby Joey/Paulette), Lowri Walton (Ensemble), Scarlet Wilderink (Baby Joey), Sam Willmott (Topthorn Hind) and Simon Wolfe (Arthur Narracott).

WAR HORSE is produced in the West End by the National Theatre and National Angels.

For tickets and more information, visit www.warhorselondon.com, www.nationaltheatre.org.uk or warhorseonstage.com.

Photo Credit: Brinkhoff Mögenburg



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