War Horse at the Princess of Wales Theatre
Ghandi once said: “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
The thought of an animal in distress deeply upsets me. Why then do I feel it necessary to acquire information and watch movies that detail the atrocities that so many of them have and continue to encounter?
Tonight I went to see War Horse at the Princess of Wales Theatre here in Toronto. The play, not the movie. I already watched the movie and cried like a baby through the whole thing. Both are adaptations of the children’s novel of the same name written by Michael Morpurgo.
The story recounts the experiences of Joey, a horse detailed for service in World War I France and the attempts of young Albert, his previous owner, to bring him safely home.
Millions of noble horses have died fighting in countless wars through human history. While researching the story Morpurgo spoke with a man who fondly remembered the horse that he fought along side. With no money to bring his beloved horse home, he was forced to sell him to a butcher. Can you imagine? After years of surviving in terrible conditions, risking life and limb for the sake of human greed and corruption, that is how the horse was repaid. As dinner.
Forgive my outrage. The Toronto play did an excellent job portraying the epic story. What stood out for me, was not only the puppetry — which is stellar — but the minimalist approach to set design that the producers and director chose.
But why listen to me? Here’s a short video you can watch to learn more. But take my word for it: It’s brilliant.