Sarah Ballenden

Written by:

Maureen Hunter

Cast Size:
10

Roles For:

  • Men: 6
  • Women: 4

Genre:

Drama
Historical

Themes:

19th Century
Canada
Canadian History
Canadian Politics
Colonialism
Gender Roles
Indigenous
Justice System
Prairies
Race

Length:

120 min.

Year Written:

2017

Synopsis:

When gossip about her spreads like wildfire through the Red River settlement, the independent-minded Metis wife of the Chief Factor of the Hudson’s Bay Company decides to fight back. Based on actual 19th century events, Sarah Ballenden is a vivid portrait of one woman’s struggle for acceptance and respect in an age of colliding cultures and shifting social values.

Characters:

SARAH Ballenden, 32. Wife of the Chief Factor, Fort Garry. Country-born. / John BALLENDEN, 38. Her husband. HBC man. A Scot. / Christopher FOSS, 33. Army man. Irish. / Adam THOM, 48. Lawyer. HBC man. A Scot. / Augustus PELLY, 31. Accountant. HBC man. English. / John DAVIDSON, perhaps 50. Mess cook, Upper Fort. English. / MARGARET Black, 32. Wife of the Chief Trader, Fort Garry. Country-born. / THE MAJOR, 52. Governor of Assiniboia. Army man. English. / MISS ANDERSON, 50. Sister of the Anglican Bishop of Rupert’s Land. English. / MISS COCKRAN, 50. Anglican Clergy wife. English. / Sir George SIMPSON, 64. Governor-in-Chief of the HBC. A Scot. / BISHOP Anderson, 52. First Anglican Bishop of Rupert’s Land. English. / Dr. John BUNN, 48. Physician. Country-born. / FLORA, 30. The Ballenden’s maid. Country born.

Doubling: MRS. COCKRAN / DR. BUNN, MARGARET / FLORA / DAVIDSON / SIMPSON and MISS ANDERSON / BISHOP, for a cast of 10.

First Produced:

2017, Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre

Resources:

Sarah Ballenden is available through Scirocco Drama.

For more information about the playwright and her work, visit the CWPO collection.

Sarah Ballenden can be accessed at the Canadian Play Outlet.