Kororāreka: The Ballad of Maggie Flynn introduces a heroine created from the vibrant true stories of New Zealand's colonial women.

“There’s a tale in my bones, fighting to be told”

Maggie Flynn, a fiery and unforgettable Irish woman leaves England a convict and arrives in Kororāreka the captain of a whaling ship. Her fortune continues to twist and turn from trophy Maori slave to wife of a great chief to Madam of the notorious King Edward Hotel. She makes her final stand in the face of British bombardment of the capital of Aotearoa New Zealand.

Kororāreka - The Ballad of Maggie Flynn takes us from wretched beginnings in 1880's London town to the lawless outpost of Kororāreka (Russell), for a brief moment New Zealand’s capital in the era of Te Tiriti o Waitangi, the Treaty of Waitangi. Maggie’s legend is reimagined with the story telling skill of Paolo Rotondo and the visual flair of Red Leap Theatre.

Told by a cast of five women, this unique story unravels the legacy of the women in our past and remembers the ones too wild to be captured by history books.

Venue Format
Theatre, Black Box Venue
Technical Rating
C, The production can be modified to suit most venues
Touring Party
8 (plus director for opening)

Kororāreka: The Ballad of Maggie Flynn is designed for easy touring and maximum audience engagement. Projection is used. Water is used on stage.

Red Leap are makers of New Zealand's highest quality original, visual theatre. Established since 2009, the company has a range of repertoire pieces for touring. Ranging from The Arrival, based on Shaun Tan's graphic novel, this ten cast ensemble piece was part of Out of the Box Festival 2018. Dust Pilgrim, a three cast production, recently toured the South Island, NZ and will be heading to Hong Kong in 2019. Red Leap is a devised physical theatre company, crossing the forms of physical theatre, imagery and storytelling. As devisors we strongly believe in playful discovery, the power of the imagination, and building a strong ensemble of performers. The company work collectively with the Artistic Director to craft the work. These values, and the notion that we improve our own practice by sharing our skills with others, are at the heart of our company.

Company Website

Unique Selling Point

Kororāreka; The Ballad of Maggie Flynn is a bilingual telling of Māori and European women at a point in New Zealand's colonial history where many of these voices have been forgotten in the official histories of the time. The cast of five women powerfully engage in this show, offering resonating role models for young and old alike that seek an authentic retelling of history.

Marketing Materials

Kororāreka had a sell-out season in Auckland and Northland in NewZealand in 2017. In 2018 we are embarking on a seven centre tour. We have clear marketing collateral developed for both seasons. Images and footage of the show are available, as are print material templates. Our educational resource is ready and has already been sold to many schools who have attended (or will attend) the show. Red Leap Theatre also offers workshops in devising and creative performance to schools and teachers.

Community Engagement

Red Leap Theatre also offers workshops in devising and creative performance to schools and teachers. These can happen in a suitable space at the performance space or the school. Schools matinees and selected public shows are followed by post-show forums where the performers and director engage directly with the audience.