mon17apr6:30 PMmon7:30 PMDr Darren Freebury-Jones: Reconstructing ‘Harey the vj’ at the Rose6:30 PM - 7:30 PM View in my timeEvent Type :Online talk,Researching the Rose

Event Details

On 3 March 1592, the Rose’s impresario Philip Henslowe recorded a performance by Lord Strange’s Men of ‘Harey the vj’. It would become one of its most popular plays.

In 1623, a play we now know as Henry VI, Part One was published in Shakespeare’s First Folio as part of a trilogy. Is the Folio text the same play that was produced at the Rose?

Most modern scholars assign the authorship of the opening act of ‘Harey the vj’ to Thomas Nashe and approximately three scenes to Shakespeare — but who wrote the rest of the play?

In this talk, Darren Freebury-Jones will propose that Thomas Kyd (who wrote The Spanish Tragedy) was Nashe’s co-author, and that Shakespeare revised the play when it later came into the possession of the Lord Chamberlain’s Men.

Looking at the commercial strategies of the theatre at the time, he will also argue that the second and third parts of Henry VI had been written by Shakespeare for Pembroke’s Men as a two-part story, and that ‘Harey the vj’ was a prequel devised by Strange’s Men to capitalise on their success.

Freebury-Jones will then reconstruct Nashe and Kyd’s original text of ‘Harey the vj’ as it would have been performed at the Rose, and offer fascinating insights into the nature of Shakespeare’s revision.


Darren Freebury-Jones is Lecturer in Shakespeare Studies at the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust in Stratford-upon-Avon. His 2016 doctoral thesis examined Thomas Kyd’s influence on Shakespeare’s early work, and he is now the Associate Editor for the first edition of Kyd’s collected works since 1901. Freebury-Jones has also investigated the boundaries of John Marston’s dramatic works as part of the Oxford Marston project and is General Editor for The Collected Plays of Robert Greene (Edinburgh University Press). He is the author of the monographs Reading Robert Greene: Recovering Shakespeare’s Rival (Routledge) and Shakespeare’s Tutor: The Influence of Thomas Kyd (Manchester University Press). His findings on the works of Shakespeare and his contemporaries have been discussed in national newspapers. His interests include early modern attribution and textual studies, digital approaches to examining drama and intertextuality, as well as performance studies, having acted in several productions of plays by Shakespeare and his contemporaries.

Tickets are £7/£5 (Friends and Students) and can be bought through TryBooking. You will receive a link to this Zoom event via email. Any additional contributions for The Rose Playhouse will be much appreciated and go towards funding the Rose Revealed Project. 

Please note that booking for this event will close at 5.00 pm on 17 April.