Entertainment & Arts

War Horse helps National Theatre to record year in 2011

War Horse in London. Photo by Simon Annand
Image caption The Broadway production of War Horse won five Tony awards in June

The National Theatre has had a "record year" with income of more than £70m, according to its latest annual report.

The figures show that 48% of the NT's funds have come from box office receipts, tours and from the West End run of War Horse.

The award-winning production generated £13.9m at the box office, up from £13.2m last year.

The show, which opened in 2007, has been seen by more than 1.4 million people in London.

Based on the novel by Michael Morpurgo, the hit play moved to Broadway in April and sold more than 240,000 tickets in its first four months.

It went on to win five Tony Awards, including best play, in June. A film adaptation, directed by Steven Spielberg, will be released in the UK next January.

Danny Boyle's production of Frankenstein and Fela! - Bill T Jones's tribute to Afrobeat legend Fela Kuti - were among the NT's top attractions.

One Man, Two Guvnors, starring James Corden, has also been successful, although figures for the production do not appear in the report because its run started in May.

But the National Theatre's director Nicholas Hytner said the show had made an "astonishing advance" of £2m for its run at the Adelphi Theatre later this year.

He went on to say that the National Theatre's year had been "full of creative excitement".

Chairman John Makinson added: "In the year covered by this review, the NT staged 1,500 performances in front of 1.6 million people, filling nine of every 10 available seats.

"It was a record year by any measure."

In March it was announced the National would receive a £1.4m reduction in funding from the Arts Council.

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