War Horse is charging into the Fox Cities Performing Arts Center through June 30. In an interview with the Post-Crescent, performers from the Tony Award-winning play discuss how they use inventive puppetry to tell the story of friendship between a boy named Albert and his horse Joey in World War I-era Europe.
“I think the puppetry and what we’ve been asked to do allows the audience to use their imaginations to be a part of making the horse real,” puppeteer Jon Riddleberger said. “What happens during the show is that each audience member has a very unique experience.”
“The three of us working together, taking all three of our ideas and going with it makes the character that much more round and that much more complete,” said Jessica Krueger, one of a trio of puppeteers that operates the horse in the play. “I think support is a huge, huge component of the play. You have three people supporting a wooden object on which somebody else rides on top. And here we’re asking the audience to support us in that pretend world, meeting us halfway.”
Based on the novel by Michael Morpurgo, War Horse won five Tonys in 2010, including Best Play. In 2011, Steven Spielberg directed a big screen version of the story, which was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture.
To get a peek at how these performers work together to bring Joey to life, check out the video from the Post-Crescent below.