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The National Theatre’s War Horse on tour (Photo: Brikhoff & Moegenburg)

The National Theatre's War Horse on tour (Photo: Brikhoff & Moegenburg)

War Horse returns to National Theatre in November

Robin Johnson

By Robin Johnson Published 21 February 2018

The National Theatre production of War Horse will return to its original home to mark the centenary of Armistice Day.

Based on Michael Morpurgo’s beloved novel of courage, loyalty and friendship, the current touring production will play in repertoire at the National from 8 November – 5 January 2019, 11 years after its NT debut, and 2 years after it last played in the West End’s New London Theatre.

Directed by Marianne Elliott and Tom Morris, War Horse features ground-breaking puppetry by South Africa’s Handspring Puppet Company which brings living, breathing horses to life on stage. The show tells the emotive story of one boy’s journey to rescue his faithful horse from the battlefields of the First World War.

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, Belgium and China. The show won 2 Olivier Awards in 2008, later collecting 5 Tonys in 2011, and actors including Game Of Thrones’ Kit Harington and Olivier Award winner Luke Treadaway have previously played the lead role of Albert.

Tickets go on sale later this year.

The National Theatre's War Horse on tour (Photo: Brikhoff & Moegenburg)The National Theatre’s War Horse on tour (Photo: Brikhoff & Moegenburg)

In other announcements made by the National Theatre today, it has been announced that Game Of Thrones’ Ciarán Hinds will co-star with Colin Morgan in Brian Friel’s new play Translations, which previews in the Olivier Theatre from 22 May. Ian Rickson directs.

The play, which explores the turbulent relationship between England and Ireland playing out in one quiet community, also includes Dermot Crowley, Aoife Duffin, Adetomiwa Edun, Michelle Fox, Ciarán Hinds, Laurence Kinlan, Colin Morgan, Seamus O’Hara, Judith Roddy and Rufus Wright.

Polly Stenham’s adaptation of Strindberg’s play Julie has also been cast, starring Vanessa Kirby (The Crown), Eric Kofi Abrefa (The Amen Corner) and Thalissa Teixeira (Yerma, Young Vic). The cast also includes Thomasin Gulgec, Dak Mashava, Beatriz Meireles, Michela Meazza, Ashley Morgan-Davies, Yuyu Rau and Petra Söör.

The show follows a newly single Julie, who throws a late night party in contemporary London. In the kitchen, Jean and Kristen clean up as the celebration heaves above them. But Julie soon initiates a power game with Jean which descends into a savage fight for survival. The show previews from 31 May.

Finally, full casting has been announced for the award winning An Octoroon by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins; the show will star Cassie Clare, Emmanuella Cole, Celeste Dodwell, Iola Evans, Ken Nwosu, Vivan Oparah, Alistair Toovey and Kevin Trainor, with cellist James Douglas.

Jacobs-Jenkins’ extraordinary and provocative play comes to the National Theatre after a sold out run at the Orange Tree Theatre last year, and offers a response to Dion Boucicault’s 1859 hit play about America, from a black American playwright.

Tickets can be purchased through the National Theatre website.

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