Heleen Verburg was born in 1964. She graduated from Amsterdam’s School for Cabaret in 1988. While still at school she wrote a one-act play which landed her the 1987 Creativity Prize. From 1987 until 1990 she was affiliated with the theatre collective Mevrouw Smit as an actress and playwright, composing works for both children and adults. She has worked as freelance writer and actress for several Dutch children’s theatre companies since 1991. Heleen Verburg’s plays are characterised by humour and poetic strength. As she does not shun the dark and macabre sides of life, embittered adult characters often knowingly and deliberately thwart children in their search for freedom and independence. However, freedom always triumphs over restriction, so her pieces are also very consoling. The situations Heleen Verburg describes are often allegorical; past and present intermingle and the characters exist in a no man’s land of heightened raw reality.