About Plunder & Lightning: A Pirate's Life

Johnny was a promising singer-songwriter who, after tragedy struck, followed a path to the bottom. He was a lost cause until a mysterious character sees his performance and promises to salvage his talent, though with a nefarious agenda in mind. The lines between reality and fantasy are blurred as Johnny descends into a pirate fantasy that puts him and his new found friends in peril. Johnny's struggle to find his way back pits him in the middle of an epic battle between good and evil on the high seas to control a mysterious object that has the power to shape space and time.

A Pirate's Life is a brand new stage experience crafted around an original script, music, and cast that’s part rock show, part musical theater, all pirates! Plunder & Lightning's A Pirate's Life is a hybrid of musical theater and rock show that tests the limits of blending theater and live concert experiences with its engaging story, original pirate-inspired rock music, and the magic of performance and puppetry. You will rock, you will cheer, you will say ARRRR!!!


Plunder & Lightning LLC

It all started in the corner of a bar…

At the onset of a global lockdown, the world stood divided on just about every level. With microplastics rampant, inflation squeezing down on the overworked, underpaid little guy while crooked politicians and bankers line the pockets of  billionaires who look down at them from space, we had become a planet drowning in pollution, intolerance, stupidity and, worst of all, apathy. We were staring down the barrel of existential threat and nobody seemed to care.

One man finally snapped. Jay Bowser, a lifelong musician and creative, was compelled to express his frustration like the rebels of history did so very well — like a pirate. He began feverishly penning song after song that channelled frustration into the spirit of piracy with clever and irreverent lyrical wordplay, and hooks inspired by his favorite music of all eras. His daughter, an accomplished actor since birth, added the missing ingredient having inspired a love of musical theater in him with the shows they sang along to driving to school. Within months, a concept album emerged that imagined the story of a young Johnny Bones taking to the sea as a pirate to tell would-be authorities that we are free men and slaves no more!

Bowser took this message public playing the corner of the Sturges Speakeasy in Harrisburg on a Thursday night in 2021 with no more than a kick drum, a guitar, and a melodica strapped to his mic stand, adorned with the iconic feathered tricorn like kindred rebels before him. His message struck a chord and the one-man-show rapidly grew into a three-man-band dazzling audiences with a fresh, original sound delivered alongside the insurgent spirit of the skull and crossbones. With Bowser at the helm of this insurgency, he enlisted lifelong friend and cultural curator Jamie Kramer to set sail on a full year of expanding the concept into a stage production, what is now “A Pirate’s Life” — an introspective rock-musical epic of despair, love, loss, and redemption that pokes fun at a crazy world out of balance and inspires every person to reclaim their freedom in this life.

This infectuous message pulled more and more talented people into its gravity and the show quickly transformed into the full-stage musical theater production proudly presented to you this evening. In true pirate from, the show ignored the conventions of music and theater to breathe fresh life into a new art form and, most importantly, deliver a message.

We hope this experience shines a light into the dark corners of life in a way that fosters the hope that, while we all have demons to face, we have the power to become the hero in our own story. As you write your story, enjoy, be inspired, and find the potential to make your world better, starting with yourself. By simply buying a ticket to this show, you’ve taken your first step into piracy; to unite with us under one flag — the black flag! We welcome you aboard.