So you’ve seen the Steven Spielberg film, and you’ve wondered how in the world a story of such epic scale could have been rendered onstage – garnering wild critical and popular acclaim, plus scads of prestigious drama awards for both its West End and Broadway productions – with its lead character portrayed by…a horse puppet. Well, it must have worked, considering that some four million people around the world have attended live performances of War Horse, Nick Stafford’s stage adaptation of a children’s novel by Michael Morpurgo about a boy and his horse separated by World War I, since its 2007 London debut.
Over the next couple of weeks, you now have your chance – four chances, actually: one in Rhinebeck and three in Rosendale – to catch a taped performance of War Horse, presented by National Theatre Live from London and originally simulcast in England on February 27. Though it’s billed as the “original production” of War Horse, featuring the Handspring Puppet Company’s phenomenal ersatz equines, some members of the original cast have moved on to even bigger things. The role of Albert, the English farmboy who pursues his beloved steed Joey behind enemy lines, was first portrayed by Kit Harington, now better-known as Jon Snow in HBO’s Game of Thrones and starring at a cinema near you in Pompeii. Sion Daniel Young plays Albert in the current cast; catch him now before he gets too famous.
National Theatre Live from London’s War Horse will be screened at Upstate Films in Rhinebeck, located at 6415 Montgomery Street (Route 9), on Wednesday, March 19 beginning at 1:30 p.m. Tickets cost $15 general admission, $13 for seniors and students and $11 for Upstate members. For information call (845) 876-2515 or visit https://upstatefilms.org.
At the Rosendale Theatre, located at 408 Main Street (Route 213) in Rosendale, National Theatre from London’s War Horse will be screened at 2 p.m. on Sunday, March 23, at 7:15 p.m. on Thursday, March 27 and at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, April 2. Tickets cost $12 general admission, $10 for Rosendale Theatre Collective members. For information call (845) 658-8989 or visit https://rosendaletheatre.org.