Stephanie Martin was inspired to write The Llandovery Castle by a plaque in a Toronto church dedicated to Agnes ‘Nan’ McKenzie a Canadian nursing sister who died on the hospital ship. Martin realized that she had never heard of the Llandovery Castle or the tragedy that surrounded it, even though it was, at the time it occurred, Canada’s worst naval disaster. 


Martin joined forces with playwright Paul Ciufo and together they vowed to bring the nurses’ story to light, embarking on a journey of historical research and interviews with relatives and descendants of those who served on the Llandovery Castle.

The sinking of the Llandovery Castle has been inexplicably all but forgotten by everyone except historians, and the incredible contributions and bravery of nurses throughout the war have also largely been overlooked. It is a privilege to help shine a light on this significant story and these remarkable women.
— Librettist Paul Ciufo

Stephanie Martin, a distinguished composer and conductor, is associate professor of music at York University’s School of the Arts, Media, Performance, and Design. She is director of Schola Magdalena, conductor emeritus of Pax Christi Chorale, and past director of music at the historic church of Saint Mary Magdalene in Toronto.

Paul Ciufo, a noted Canadian playwright, was a finalist for the Governor General's Literary Awards for his play Reverend Jonah, which premiered at Blyth Festival in 2007. Ciufo's historical drama Narcisse garnered a Governor General's History Award, and his radio drama On Convoy was produced and broadcast nationally and internationally by CBC Radio.