Heroine Poster- April 9-12A Play by Karen Bassett

Heroine is an unusual, swashbuckling piece of riveting theatre about two desperate women stuck in a Jamaican jail under sentence of death in 1720.

“This new play is dynamic, provocative, funny and action-packed,” says Webb. “When I saw it in 2010, I knew I had to be involved and ensure that theatre-lovers got to see it. You won’t be disappointed by it’s passion, it’s action and it’s tight dialogue!”

Heroine is the story of two women,

Ann Bonny and Mary Read, who became

known as history’s most famous —

and ferocious—female pirates.


DSC_89291722. The sunset years of piracy’s golden age.  Heroine opens when two notorious pirates are    vaulted into a Caribbean prison on charges of piracy, and murder.  But these pirates are starkly different from the hundreds awaiting trial. These pirates are women.

Ann Bonny. Raised in a family of plantation privilege. Abandoned it all for the thrill of the plunder. Known for her razor wit, and equally sharp axe.

Mary Read.  Raised in poverty and disguised as a boy.  Climbed the British military ranks to become an esteemed cavalry leader.  Disciplined , dutiful, and a fervent battlefield executioner.

DSC_8910Relieved from service, Read is taken by Bonny’s pirate crew while working on a merchant ship. She makes the fateful decision to choose “join” over “jump”. But after months of pirating the seas, she is captured again. This time with Ann Bonny. And this time– as a pirate.

Bonny schemes escape the noose, and she strategizes to conspire with her cell mate Mary Read.

With her trust betrayed and her legacy threatened by defilement, Read unravels, and cutlass in hand, wildly lashes out at Bonny. As Read’s life hangs the balance, Bonny is drawn to save the woman she publicly targeted, but secretly admired.

Through stinging dialogue, bawdy humour, and explosive physicality, these fierce outlaws spar for the heroine title—until death do they part.


You can book HEROINE for your venue for 2016.


“The pair spar both verbally and in some of the finest metal-clashing sword fights to grace a stage in Halifax. Don’t miss your chance to see this swashbuckling drama—although with any luck, we will see a remount in the near future.”   The Coast

For information on how to book HEROINE into your venue, please contact:

Jeremy Webb

Office: 902 492 0444



Key personnel

KAREN BASSETT:  actor and playwright

Karen is a Halifax based theatre actor, improviser, and playwright. Her passionate interests in playwriting, stage combat, and female heroes spawned the writing of her newest play Heroine, about pirate Ann Bonny, and cavalry leader Mary Read, produced in Halifax in May 2010. Karen is a dedicated artist with the physical theatre company The Irondale Ensemble Project. She has performed for Neptune Theatre, Magnetic North Theatre Festival, Eastern Front Theatre, Manitoba Theatre Centre, Luminato Festival, Ship’s Company Theatre, Chester Playhouse, and Mulgrave Road Theatre.  An emerging artist in fight direction, she has choreographed violence for Ship’s Company Theatre, Neptune Theatre, and the Halifax Theatre for Young People. Karen is a member of the Playwright’s Guild of Canada, the Playwright’s Atlantic Resource Centre, the Canadian Actors’ Equity Association, ACTRA, PERFORM Nova Scotia, and Fight Directors Canada. She has been nominated for two Nova Scotia Theatre Awards for writing and performance.


Francine DeschepperFrancine is a Halifax based actor who has toured both nationally and internationally.  Recent favourites include her Merritt Award winning role as Sybil in 2b Theatre’s When It Rains (Belfry’s SPARK Festival, La Mama NYC, Summerworks); Margaret in Glace Bay Miners’ Museum (NAC, Neptune).  Other credits include The Comedy of Errors, Mrs. Parliament’s Night Out, Les Liasons Dangereuses (Neptune); Criminal Genius, Heroine (Festival Antigonish); The Odyssey (Two Planks); and Twelfth Night (Luna Sea).  For TV: Seed (City TV); Call Me Fitz (HBO Canada); Haven (SyFy). Next up, Francine will perform When It Rains at the Magnetic North Festival and the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

ROBERT SEALE: director and fight director

An Acting graduate of the National Theatre School in Montreal, Mr. Seale also holds a Masters Degree summa cum laude in Performance from York University in Toronto.  He has been a CAEA and ACTRA professional since 1974, appearing in over 150 leading roles in the major theatres across Canada, and in the U.S.  Besides private teaching, Mr. Seale has done over 300 professional consultation, choreography and stunt contracts on stage and film through his company, Fights Unlimited – including work with such groups as the National Ballet, Shaw Festival, National Arts Centre, Canadian Opera Company, National Ballet, and both the Toronto and Atlantic Film Festivals.  In 1992 Mr. Seale completed formulation of a national system of Fight Certification for Canada, and became founding President the next year of Fight Directors, Canada.  He remained the elected President until 2000, when he withdrew to become Executive Director for the IOSP in Washington, D.C. – the international “Round Table” of professionals.  Mr. Seale holds an internationally recognized certification as a Fight Master, and is currently a professor at Acadia University. He is hoping to complete his doctoral dissertation (The Bio Grammar of Violence) at an Australian university next year.  Mr. Seale is also at work on a cooperative research project with First Nations peoples internationally, examining the cultural ethnology of violence in performance.