Own production

Co-production: S/S Hestmanden – Norwegian war sailor museum
Duration: 70 minutes

World premiere:
9th of September, 2022
Playing dates: 10th, 11th and 16th-18th of September, 2022
The Cultural Schoolbag (DKS): 17th-20th of October, 2022
Tour 2023:
Kristiansand: 22nd-25th of June and 30th of June-2nd of July
Langesund: 7th-8th of July
Horten: 10th-12th of July
Moss: 14th-16th of July
Oslo: 19th-23rd and 27th-30th of July
Risør: 2nd-3rd of August
Sandefjord: 5th-6th of August
Mandal: 9th-12th of August
Cast and creatives
Oskar: André Lassemo
Ingvald: Jon Erik Myre

Narrator (voice over):
Lasse Lindtner
Captain Jentoft (voice over): Åsmund-Brede Eike


Playwright: Jon Erik Myre and André Lassemo
Director and dramaturge: Åsmund Brede Eike
Script consultants: Kristian Landmark and Kjetil Kro Sørborg
Composer/musical director: Jon Erik Myre
Musical arrangers: Jon Erik Myre og Tormod Tvete Vik
Producers: Jon Erik Myre and André Lassemo
Co-producer (West coast, 2024): Ingvild Lunde Norum
Orchestrator: Lars Lunde
Costume design: Rebecca Dahle
Costume makers: Rebecca Dahle, Ylva Lovise Bolkan and Anita Bojarska
Set design and props: Kanon Produksjon and Richard Olsen
Sound designer: Kristian Bronebakk
Light designer and technician – Kristiansand and tour: Victor Phillipson
Technician – Kristiansand: Anders Hardeland
Technician – Oslo: Enrique Lietor


Poster photo: Simon Scotting and Hilfred Mikalsen
Poster design: Gunstein Myre and Jon Erik Myre
Playbill and show photos: Gunstein Myre
S/S Hestmanden // Bredalsholmen Dokk og Fartøyvernsenter, Andøyveien, Kristiansand
Funding by
Summer tour 2023 is funded by: Leif Høeghs stiftelse, Oslo kommune, Kristiansand kommune, Agder fylkeskommune, Fond for utøvende kunstnere, Fritt ord, Anders Jahres humanitære stiftelse, Bamble kommune, Horten kommune, Horten Apartment, Radisson Blu, Mandal Hotel, Hotel Vic and Oslo Havn

Premiere was funded by: Fritt Ord, Bergesenstiftelsen, Tom Wilhelmsens stiftelse, Agder fylkeskommune, Scenekunst Sør, Cultiva Ekspress, Kristiansand kommune and Fond for frilansere

Development was funded by: Fritt Ord, Agder Fylkeskommune, Cultiva Ekspress and Scenekunst Sør
Special thanks
Stian Engedal Lunde, Gro Eikeland og Thea Eriksen v/Vest-Agder-museet, Lars Lunde, Ragnar Bjerkreim, Andreas L. Molde, Hilfred Mikalsen, Anne Helene Halvorsen, Anita B. and Roald Straumann, Kai Haugen, Jan Oskar Leonhard Pettersen, Myre and Lassemo families.

The Lucky Ship

– a war sailor story

by Jon Erik Myre and André Lassemo

World War II is in full swing. The Norwegian merchant fleet becomes a piece in a total war, and Norwegian sailors are suddenly in the middle of the heat, whether they want it or not. Our story begins when the news that the Germans have occupied Norway has just reached the crew. We follow the characters Ingvald and Oskar, two brothers-in-law who work on board the ship S/S Hestmanden. Their journey, the situations the ship and its crew end up in, and the return home, are presented through encounters between them, literally between battles.

The play is based on documents and interviews conducted by war sailors during World War II. The historical background to this piece, as well as the ships experiences, is based directly from sources taken from the Norwegian War Sailors Museum at the Vest-Agder Museum. The two main characters’ lives, experiences, and conversations with each other are fictional, but are inspired by interviews of former war sailors. The production is a collaborative project between the theatre company Kanon Produksjon and S/S Hestmanden – Norwegian War Sailor Museum at the Vest-Agder Museum, and will be played on board the ship S/S Hestmanden in September 2022 and on tour summer 2023.

See playbill

Listen on Spotify

Creative team

André Lassemo

Jon Erik Myre

Lasse Lindtner
Voice over

Rebecca Dahle
Costume designer

Kristian Bronebakk
Sound designer

Victor Phillipson
Light designer/technician


Review 2023

A powerful experience 
On Saturday 12 August, I had the pleasure of experiencing the play “The lucky ship” – on board S/S Hestmanden – the actual lucky ship, at the port in Mandal. The ship, built in 1911, has survived two world wars, and this summer housed the stage for a theatre performance created by Kanon Produksjon. The script has been prepared jointly by Jon Erik Myre and André Lassemo. The two also have roles in the play, the former plays Ingvald and the latter Oskar, two fictitious war sailors who gather much of the experience that comes to light in a number of interviews with former war sailors. Åsmund Brede Eike is the director and dramaturg. The production has been created in collaboration between Kanon Produksjon and S/S Hestmanden – Norwegian Naval Museum.

The performance is strong and makes a deep impression. First of all, the two actors are very good in portraying these two, who are also brothers-in-law and it is no coincidence that they end up on the same ship in Norway being occupied by Nazi Germany.

We follow them through life, land law and Christmas Eve at sea, and even more through anxiety and horror, despair and horror – all believably and vividly played by two bundles of energy who know their craft. It will be a story about war sailors’ anxiety in general, and more specifically about two men who get to know each other under extreme stress, and thus about recognition of what both family ties and even more friendship ties mean when things are at their worst.

I happened to have two foreign guests with me who do not speak Norwegian. They were a little informed about what it was going to be about. But the reaction afterwards speaks for itself: They were both moved and shaken by what they referred to as outstanding physical theater in the fantastic surroundings offered by the cargo hold in the bow of Hestmanden. If the show is to live on and this summer’s theater tour is to be repeated in a later year, I have no hesitation in giving it my strongest recommendation.

Emil Otto Syvertsen
Member of Norwegian Critics Association

Audience reviews 2023

«I have just been to watch my colleagues who have created a very good show about a small part of sailing during the war, and some aspects that are perhaps not talked about very often. It was very moving and very beautiful, so I hope people will come and see it, because it is both worthwhile and important. That is our story. Really great.»
– Helge Jordal (actor)

«Now I’m sitting at home in my chair and I’m completely exhausted after the intense performance we witnessed in the hold on board Hestmanden! And yes, I have to use “witnesses” instead of “audience”, because we felt like we were sitting there while the action actually unfolded. A closeness and intimacy that grabbed hold of us from the very first moment and held on until it was over, and we weren’t quite sure whether it was right to leave, or if we should stay and let everything sink in properly. This is something we will carry with us for a long time.»
– Tove Laberg Kristoffersen

«It’s eerily close. You sit as close as you can get to some of the most significant aspects of Norwegian history. Very, very great and strong.»
– Olav Christopher Prowse

We felt it right in our hearts. In a way, we were almost a part of it. It was something entirely different to experience it with our own eyes. And it touched our souls completely.
– Audience member in Langesund

«It was very interesting. Exciting, simply. I pricked up my ears when I heard along the way about the captain of Hestmanden who was called Jentoft. It was probably my grandfather.»
– Terje Jentoft Larsen

«It is clear that the domestic journey was tough, but also abroad, like this, being away from your family for five or six years. There are completely inhuman sufferings that people have been through. We have seen the movie about the war sailors, and we think it was very good. What is elaborated here through this play is the emotional aspect. How broken you become, and how painful it is to be in that situation. Being afraid all the time. Being far away from your family. It is an achievement to bring out so much emotion as an actor. It is very strongly done.»
– Bente Bolstas

«I feel simply lucky to have seen THE LUCKY SHIP, and I hope many more people go and do that too. Warm recommendation..»
– Mari Nøren Stenersen

«What was great about the show is that the two on stage were worth listening to, and they explained in a very nice way what it must have been like to be a war sailor. In my family, both on my side and on my partner’s side, we have experienced losing people during the war on Norwegian ships, and it was powerful to get the atmosphere we got down there. Almost like being on board with these two who were so different but became very good friends. It was a performance that I now recommend to my mates, and I will bring more people to the next performance before it is finished here in Oslo.»
– Svein Stubberud

«I was completely moved to tears. I highly recommend it. They brought history to life in a new way.»
– Publikummer i Kristiansand

«It was amazing. It was strong. This is history, after all. It is important to know what has happened. Great performance by the actors. And not least, to be on board the ship. Unforgettable. Very strong with glimpses of some humor in between to help build it up. All in all, an incredibly fine show that everyone should go and see.»
– Ronnie Mega Herdlevær (actor)

«It was great. It is a large part of our history, and a privilege to gain an insight into. It is painful and beautiful at the same time.»
– Audience member in Kristiansand

«It was a very strong performance. It made a strong impression, and of course, playing it on the boat adds an extra dimension. My father was a war sailor, so this was strong.»
– Audience member in Langesund

Audience reviews 2022

“As the son of a war sailor and leader of the Agder War Sailors Memorial Association, it was with some excitement and a little skepticism that I sat down in the hold of Hestmanden for the performance THE LUCKY SHIP. When I left I felt like I had been part of something great! The two actors, their chemistry, the direction, the setting – everything clicked and gave me, and certainly the other spectators, an unforgettable experience. I can safely say that I came closer to the experiences the war sailors must have had. Thank you very much!!”
– Arne Lervik (Head of Agder War Sailors Memorial Association)

“THE LUCKY SHIP brings to life the history of D/S Hestmanden and the war sailors in a unique way. The venue for the play gives it an extra dimension, – here you get a piece of the important history of the war sailors in authentic surroundings in the Hestmanden’s hold. The actors deliver solid and credible interpretations of the war sailors’ experiences, and focus on several of the emotions the war sailors must have gone through, – everything from anger, grief and fear of death, to joy, togetherness and will to fight. THE LUCKY SHIP leaves its mark on the public, and is an important contribution to the dissemination of the history of war sailors.”
– Ragnhild Bie (Conservator at D/S Hestmanden)

“This was a fantastic performance! We were captivated by both a powerful story and strong acting performances. We have now seen and been impressed by 4 different productions from Kanon Produksjon and were also impressed this time! Myre and Lassemo manage to convey a strong and important story, and the fact that the performance takes place on board Hestmanden creates an incredibly strong framework around the play. Really hope more people get the chance to see this show! As a teacher in a secondary school in Eastern Norway, I think that seeing THE LUCKY SHIP would have been an excellent opportunity for students to get to know this important part of Norwegian history better.”
– Excited greetings from Karin og Tor Borøy

“For a good hour, we become a part of the lives of these two war sailors. With both smell, sound, and sight, we are very close to the dramatic fate of these two individuals far out at sea. We are there in the cabin among meals, underwear, love, longing, and hope. Aboard the Hestmanden, their fear becomes ours as well. It is my wish that all young people in Norway can take part in this living history lesson.”
– Karina Folkestad (Head of music and dance department, Vågsbygd Secondary School)

“THE LUCKY SHIP is a strong performance that provides a naked and honest encounter with a part of our war history that few people know about. The nerve and intensity, and the actors are able to play out both sadness, joy, uncertainty and fear. The physical scenography, as well as the use of elaborate soundscapes, contribute strongly to authenticity and identification. As a teacher, I have no doubt that I will bring my students here!”
– Line Key Graarud (teacher)