|Photo from The Horse and His Boy by Trumpets|
Once upon a time, there was a young boy with a fair face who lived with his father by the sea. His name was Shasta and his story is something you don't want to miss.
I got to watch Trumpets' The Horse and His Boy last Saturday at Meralco Theater. For Narnia fans, literature fans, theater fans, I repeat: You. Do. Not. Want. To. Miss. This.
Trumpets' The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe was the very first theater play I watched several years ago and I loved it! So coming back to watch The Horse and His Boy which is—as the Sons of Adam and the Daughters of Eve know—the next book in The Chronicles of Narnia was special. There's something spectacular and magical about watching a story through theater more than watching it at the movies. Everything is alive and near and "real"—at least, for the time being.
From the props to the costumes to the wonderful, wonderful use of shadow play and hand-held puppet characters, The Horse and His Boy deserves the hashtag #EpicRide because it is indeed an epic adventure into the beautiful, fantastical world of Narnia. I came into the theater with high expectations because The Horse and His Boy is my favorite book of the series and Aravis is my like my spirit book character because of her spunkiness, stubbornness, and all. I am glad to say that it did not disappoint and in fact exceeded my expectations. Calormene is just how I imagined it with the Middle Eastern arches and costumes, the rich colors and cultural norms. How they handled all those animals on stage went very well, especially the two horses. And how they tied in the narration with the flow of the story was very good. Of course, nothing is perfect, and if you are a book purist, you will know what I mean when you watch it. But those hiccups are tiny and all the other good things far outweigh them.
The Horse and His Boy is not a musical, but there are a few songs scattered throughout the play. Reb Atadero, who plays Shasta, has a beautiful voice. The Narnian lullaby sung acappella is just exquisite. And it was nice to hear some themes from The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.
This is something I wish everyone would watch. Students need to see this and be re-introduced to C.S. Lewis and The Chronicles of Narnia. You don't really have to have read the book, or be a fan of the series. If you like a good story, go see The Horse and His Boy. There is the lost art of theater-going that needs to be revived and redeemed. I think this play is a good place to start for those who have never been to see a theater play.
Don't miss this! I really, really mean it. I know I would watch again in a heartbeat. Don't miss this epic ride, this grand adventure, this glimpse into Narnia and all the magic it holds.