Edward VI (r.1547-1553)

Edward didn’t live desperately long, and it’s always a struggle to assign precise dates to things, so this page is really pushing the limits of this format. But heigh ho. Go back to 1509 to 1547.


Royal Entry of Edward VI prior to his Coronation – Features a mini staging of The Lion King. No seriously, it does. First Look Exploring Session.

Somebody and Others (fragment) – Exploring session available, though we’ve found there are more questions than answers with this play.


John Bon and Master Parson by Luke Shepherd – A Dialogue, but it’s quite dramatic and reasonably stageable. If you keep the horses off stage. Exploring session available on the podcast here, and a full cast audio adaptation is below.


The Unjust Usurped Primacy of the Bishop of Rome by Bernardino Ochino, translated by John Ponet. Soooo, this is a long one, and we’ve to date only dipped a toe into Act 1. Is it a drama? No, it’s a dialogue text thing. BUT, it has character and life to it, and a massively cut down version might be adapted into something performable. First Look at Act One here.


Detraction (fragment) – a short sequence of Vices changing their appearance and preparing their lies. The video below should start at the point we begin looking at the text.

The Resurrection of Our Lord (fragmentary) – a two day event, surviving in a fragmentary state, but with a mostly complete Luke and Cleophas sequence. Exploring session available.

The Life and Repentance of Mary Magdalene by L. Wager – exploring session available.

The Disobedient Child by Thomas Ingleland – Exploring session available. This is the earliest date for this play, the epilogue is Elizabethan, so it might have a later performance history. Also see Nice Wanton below and The Prodigal Son – which features the same plot and is currently listed around 1530 in this timeline. First Look exploring session is available on the podcast below, there’s a Second Look fast paced run through on the YouTube channel as well.

Nice Wanton, by anonymous – Exploring session available on the podcast below, plus a separate session on YouTube.


Lusty Juventus by Richard Wever – First and Second Look Exploring sessions available in the playlist. Skip to the Second Look here.


Ralph Roister Doister by Nicholas Udall – exploring sessions on this hilarious comedy are available. Long live the wondrous Mumblecrust! Also available from other sources – there are videos of a production from 2000, performed at the Players’ Ring Theater and Directed by Mike Gillett, which covers the whole text.

An Satire of the Three Estates by Sir David Lindsay – the manuscript for this bounces about a bit in terms of rewrites (a lost version was around in 1540), but here’s as good a place to put it. We’re not down to do a full version at present, but it has been done brilliantly already and can be viewed online. http://stagingthescottishcourt.brunel.ac.uk/

We have, however, done a First Look Exploring session, with a modified text. More, one day, to follow.


John Bale stages his mystery plays in Ireland… it doesn’t go well. There’s a playlist of our work on Bale’s plays on the podcast to date, and here’s the work from YouTube – God’s Promises, The Baptism & The Temptation.

Beware the Cat by William Baldwin – a significant work of literature which begins life and is set from the end of Edward’s reign. During the plague, Robert Crighton did a live streamed exploring session on his YouTube channel. There is also a discussing episode on the podcast with Dr Rachel Stenner about a performance of the text.

Early 1550’s…

Gammer Gurtons Needle by Mr S – This also features in the next list, just to highlight how tricksy lists can be. Also because we want to focus your attention on plays we’ve done a lot of work on because it was voted for production by our patrons. Though printed in 1575, this is the earliest point that this play might have come about. A reference to a play called Diccon the Bedlem in 1562/3 could also be about the same play. Full cast audio adaptation and !SPOILERS! episodes are all available on the podcast and in this handy playlist.

That’s it for Edward, off to Mary – there’s probably a lot of overlap with these plays, thematically there isn’t a lot of difference in the material that survives to us. Go to 1553 to 1558.