War Horse author Michael Morpurgo writes new play about WW1 Christmas truce


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The Independent Culture

War Horse author Michael Morpurgo has written a new play about the Christmas truce of the First World War.

His latest work focuses on the football match played by German and British troops on no man’s land on Christmas day 1914. The two sides sang carols and exchanged cigarettes and military souvenirs.

A shorter version of the play will be performed on the Ypres battlefield to mark the centenary of the war’s outbreak, according to the Sunday Telegraph.

Virginia McKenna, best known for her role in the 1966 film Born Free, admitted that she has been cast in the project.

“When I heard that Michael Morpurgo wanted me for this production, I was so excited,” she said. “I jumped at the chance to do it. I think he is a genius. War Horse was simply fantastic, and this new work about the football match is so brilliant.”

The 81-year-old continued: “To have the opportunity to be part of it at Ypres, where it took place, on the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War, where so many men lost their lives, will, I’m sure, be a deeply emotional occasion and one to remember.”

The actress said the cast would be “doing a version of it” during a break in War Horse at the New London Theatre in the not too distant future.