Best-selling tale to ride again thanks to special new app
An interactive app based on Michael Morpurgo's best-selling children's novel War Horse has been launched by Egmont Press.
First announced at London Book Fair, at the heart of the app is the complete text of the novel, together with an unabridged audiobook reading by the author.
Alongside the text a sits a timeline telling the real story of the First World War through documents, maps, photographs and film. As in the novel, the war is seen from both Allied and German perspectives, with professionally narrated first-hand quotes and more than 200 original photographs to bring the reader closer to the soldiers' experience. The content is carefully curated by theme, allowing the reader to learn more about key battles, events and people.
Mr Morpurgo said: "When I wrote my story all those years ago in Devon, I never dreamed that Joey would gallop on like this. First the National Theatre's amazing production, then a wonderful movie by one of the world's greatest directors and now an app which truly has the spirit of my original story right at its centre. I couldn't be more delighted."
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The Insights section presents 34 video interviews with historians, experts and the author, which shed light on the inspiration for the book and its historical setting. Views on horses in war, trench life and the Western Front are supported by related images, subtitles, video and rotational photography.
There is also an exclusive, 80-minute live filmed performance of War Horse, which completes the digital experience. It is performed by Michael Morpurgo and renowned British folk musicians John Tams and Barry Coope, who wrote the songs for the stage version of War Horse.
The app has been created in partnership with Touch Press, creator of apps The Elements and The Waste Land, and Illuminations, award-winning producers of performance media.
Cally Poplak, managing director of Egmont Press and Egmont US, said: "Just as The National Theatre used War Horse to reinvent puppet theatre, we have worked with Touch Press on War Horse to transform our notion of the enhanced ebook. The book is centre stage and so is the spirit of the book: a storyteller wanting to make accessible, relevant and vivid a period in our history that is increasingly remote for children today."
It is priced at £9.99 and available from the Apple App store.
Specialist children's publisher Egmont sells more than 25 million books and 12 million magazines each year. The company is home to some of the world's best-loved authors, illustrators and characters such as Michael Morpurgo, Andy Stanton, Michelle Magorian, Julia Donaldson, Winnie the Pooh, Wallace and Gromit, Tintin, Mr Men, Thomas the Tank Engine, Barbie, and Ben 10.
Equestrian artists' skills to dazzle in debut production
EquiCirque, a new UK-based equestrian production company, will launch its debut event Adrenaline at ExCeL in London tonight.
Running for three nights, from 16-18 November on each night of the HorseWorldLive exhibition, this unique action-packed show will feature some of the world's leading equestrian artists in an amazing mixture of horsemanship, acrobatics, classical equitation, stunt riding and special effects.
The confirmed line-up of artists includes internationally renowned performers such as Lorenzo, Gilles Fortier, Clémence Faivre, Los Rios, Joel Chacon and Hap Ô Tempo.
Amanda Drury, managing director of EquiCirque Ltd explains the motivation behind EquiCirque and its launch production Adrenaline: "Through the launch of EquiCirque we aim to bring a fresh approach to equestrian productions, bringing together world-class artists to perform in breathtaking high action shows.
"Our first show, Adrenaline at ExCeL in London, will do just that. Not only have we been able to secure a stellar line-up of internationally acclaimed equestrian artists – who have never appeared together in the UK – but we are also creating a show that provides truly edge-of-the-seat action combining beautiful horses, outstanding skill and horsemanship with state-of-the-art production and special effects.
"Adrenaline will have mass appeal – from the serious horse enthusiasts to a much wider audience looking for an unforgettable and action packed evening of entertainment. We are especially pleased to be partnering for our first event with HorseWorldLive in such a prestigious Olympic venue."
For more details on performances and tickets see www.equicirque.com.