Professor David Roberts
BA (Hons) - University of Bristol
DPhil - University of Oxford
English Drama, 1600-1700, theatre criticism, and English prose, 1660-1770.
The Life of Harris the Actor (Gold World Publishing, 2015)
Restoration Plays and Players: An Introduction (Cambridge University Press, 2014)
Thomas Betterton: The Greatest Actor of the Restoration Stage (Cambridge University Press, 2010)
Ed., Daniel Defoe, A Journal of the Plague Year (Oxford World's Classics, 2010)
'Class and the Seventeenth-Century Actor,' Studies in Theatre and Performance (2010)
'"I think no ill one". A Letter from Thomas Betterton sheds new light on the Chandos Portrait', The Times Literary Supplement, 14 August 2009
'"Almost Impossible in Praise": Dedicatory Criticism in English Dramatic Texts, 1660-1700', 1650-1850: Critical Voices Special Issue (October 2008)
'Thomas Betterton, Bookseller's Apprentice', The Review of English Studies (November 2007)
'Caesar's Gift: playing the park in the Seventeenth Century', ELH vol 71 (also given as conference paper at 'Literary London', Goldsmith's College London, 2002)
'Theatre Criticism and the Law', New Theatre Quarterly vol XIX part 3, 2003
'Sir Fopling in the Mall', Notes and Queries vol 50 n.s. no.3, 2003
'Shakespeare, Theater Criticism and the Acting Tradition', Shakespeare Quarterly vol 53 no.3, 2002
'Two Shakespearian Allusions and the Date of Marvell's "A Nymph Complaining for the Death of her Faun"', Notes and Queries vol 49 n.s. no.3, 2002
'Henry VIII and The True Chronicle History of King Leir', Notes and Queries vol 48 n.s. no.3, 2001
'Ravishing Strides: signs of the peripatetic on the seventeenth-century stage', New Theatre Quarterly vol XVII part 1, 2001
2001-2010 Numerous reviews for Notes and Queries, The Scriblerian, Shakespeare Quarterly; most recently of James Bulman, Shakespeare Cross-Dressed, for Shakespeare Quarterly, and the Wesleyan edition of Fielding's A Journal of a Voyage to Lisbon for Notes and Queries.
Currently working on Anglo-French Drama, 1660-1700; the life of William Congreve; an edition of the sale catalogue of Thomas Betterton's books and pictures, Pinacotheca Bettertonaeana; and a commissioned essay for Metzler Verlag on performances of Hamlet, 1600-1709.
Programme essays for The Royal Opera House, most recently for Hansel and Gretel (December 2008), on the history of fairytales and Handel's Tamerlano (March 2010, on Tamburlaine from Marlowe to Rowe). Guest contributor to Jude Kelly's Radio 4 programme on Restoration actresses, Summer 2010; interviews on BBC Hereford and Worcester, BBC Radio WM and Saga FM, Birmingham. Extensive correspondence/features in Times Higher Education; recent feature in the English Subject Centre publication, Wordplay, called 'Realising (English in) the University in the Twenty-First Century.' Pre-performance lecture on Stoppard and Sheridan for the Chichester Festival Theatre, August 2010.
Author/editor of four volumes for Oxford University Press including a 1989 monograph study of Restoration Audiences, The Ladies, and of two textbooks for Kogan Page/Taylor and Francis. David would welcome proposals for projects on Renaissance and Restoration Drama or on theatre criticism.
Since 2008 David has written programme essays for the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, most recently for the 2016 production of Chabrier’s L’Etoile. He has recently written a piece for the Bristol Old Vic to celebrate their opening night in May 1766.
David Roberts is one of the University’s dedicated team of trained media champions, and can comment on a range of subjects including:
- The Arts