AM774 . Bruce in Beijing

Life-size puppets are center attraction on stage

2015-08-09 20:04:19


Preparing the War Horse puppets at NTC Beijing

Rehearsal of War Horse at NTC Beijing

War Horse at British Embassy Beijing

War Horse performance at British Embassy Beijing

'War Horse'


Katrina Gilroy, producer from the National Theatre of the UK talks of the work that has gone in to creating the Chinese version of ‘War Horse’. The show will commence on  4 September with fifty performances over six weeks at the National Theatre of China on Guang’anmen Wai Dajie before moving on to Shanghai.

Centre of attraction on stage is the horse, ‘Joey’ – a life size puppet in which three puppeteers - ‘head, heart and hind’- work very closely together. It is the creation of Hand Spring Puppets based in South Africa. The company are famed for ‘normal-sized’ puppets but this life-size model was a challenge which started to come alive in the UK National Theatre’s workshops back in 2006.

All the natural horse movements are recreated on stage – the audience has the feeling they are watching a real animal. It is heavy work with the horse even carrying real people. Six teams are involved, rotating through the performance.