War Horse has been amazing theater goers in London and on Broadway. Critics and audiences alike have lauded the show, especially the life-like puppetry involving the horses.
Taking place as World War One begins, the show follows Joey, young Albert’s beloved horse, who is sold to the cavalry and shipped from England to France. He’s soon caught up in enemy fire, and fate takes him on an extraordinary journey, serving on both sides before finding himself alone in no man’s land. But Albert cannot forget Joey and, still not old enough to enlist, he embarks on a treacherous mission to find him and bring him home.
As part of the of Fifth Third Bank Broadway in Atlanta Series, the national tour of War Horse will play its Atlanta engagement at the Fox Theatre. Find out what it takes to bring Joey to life by reading the 12 interesting facts about Joey below, courtesy of Broadway in Atlanta.
1. The puppet (Joey), which weighs 120lbs, is handmade by 14 people. Its frame is mostly cane, soaked, bent and stained.
2. An aluminum frame along the spine, lined partly with leather for comfort, allows the horse to be ridden.
3. Stretched, hosiery-like Georgette fabric makes up the “skin” beneath the frame.
4. A puppeteer at the head controls the ears and head; one in the heart controls breathing and front legs; a third in the hind controls the tail and back legs.
5. A harness connects the puppet’s and puppeteer’s spines so his or her movements become the breathing of the horse.
6. The tail and ears are moveable instead of the lips or eyelids, because that’s how horses usually express themselves.
7. Two levers connected with bicycle brake cables control the leather ears.
8. The puppet, just under 10ft long and about 8ft tall, has about 20 major joints. Vertical levers curl the knees and lift the hooves.
9. The neck is made of carbon fiber glass for flexibility.
10. The eyes are black color behind clear resin so light refracts through them.
11. The right hind lever moves the tail up and down; the left hind lever, left to right; moved together, it spirals.
12. The hair in the mane and tail is made of Tyvek, a plastic-like paper.
The Atlanta engagement of the Broadway hit and Tony Award® winning War Horse runs September 25 to September 30, 2012. For more information about the show and others in the Fifth Third Bank Broadway in Atlanta season, please visit the Broadway in Atlanta website. Tickets are available online at www.foxtixatl.com, by phone at 1-855-ATL-TIXX or at the Fox Theatre box office.