I will be uncharacteristically brief. Today, Abby Bailey, one of the dressers on the show, sent me the following email about a charitable endeavor that she and Holly Nissen, also a dresser, coordinated backstage this month at "War Horse": "For the past 17 years Theatrical Wardrobe Union Local #764 has sponsored a Toy Drive partnering with the non-profit organization Housing Works. New, unwrapped toys are collected for homeless children up to the age of seventeen who are affected by HIV/AIDS. I have participated in the toy drives of the past. This year I wanted to be more involved, so I volunteered to help organize with Holly. Everyone this year at Lincoln Center Theater was extremely generous, 118 toys generous! We collected more toys this year than we did last year, and hopefully next year we can top that!"
I mention this Toy Drive to give an indication of the way that for almost two years the cast and crew of "War Horse" have been tireless in their charitable efforts on a variety of causes. You can never glance at the show's backstage bulletin board without seeing a plea for volunteers on a particular effort, ranging from homelessness to Hurricane Sandy relief to cancer fundraising to children facing a variety of challenges. And you will never see a bulletin-board sign-up sheet asking for volunteers in one of these efforts without noticing several names of cast and crew affixed to it. Like the good citizens and wonderful human beings they are, the cast and crew need no recognition in order to pursue these efforts. But I think it's worth taking a moment to salute them anyway.
Brendan Lemon is the American theater critic for the Financial Times and the editor of lemonwade.com.