Patrons and Performances

Three generations of the Brydges family sponsored troupes during the Tudor period:

John Brydges (REED PP), 1st Baron Chandos, was the patron of a company of players in 1549-50 who performed at the Booth Hall in Shrewsbury (REED PP).

Edmund Brydges (REED PP), 2nd Baron Chandos and son of John, was patron to a company in 1558-9 who performed in Goucester and Ludlow (REED PP).

Giles Brydges (REED PP) sponsored a troupe of players who traveled widely in England as early as 1577 into 1593 (REED PP). The company is traceable in the major touring circuits of the time: East Anglia (Norwich), the Southeast (Dover, Rye, Folkestone), Midlands (Coventry), Southwest (Bath, Exeter), West Midlands (Gloucester, Ludlow, Lyme), and the Northwest (York). They performed primarily in civic halls (common halls, guildhalls, booth halls), but at Lyme they performed at a private residence, Lyme Park (REED PP).

William Brydges (REED PP), 4th Baron Chandos and brother of Giles, was patron of a company of players from the 1590s to 1601 (REED PP). Like his brother's company, the 4th Lord Chandos' troupe covered England with performances, most frequently at civic hall venues: East Anglia (Norwich), Southeast (Faversham), Midlands (Coventry), Southwest (Bath, Bristol), West Midlands (Gloucester, Evesham, Leominster, Ludlow, Lyme), and Northwest (York). Also like the 3rd Lord Chandos' troupe, this company performed at Lyme Park; in addition, they performed at The Angel (an inn? public house?) in Coventry and Marmaduke Gill's house in York.


Robert Armin is the most notable player associated with Lord Chandos' players. No evidence identifies the circumstances under which he joined the company, nor when he left, but general scholarly opinion is that he had joined the Chamberlain's players by 1600. In Foole upon Foole (1600), Armin mentions one company clown, Grumball, as well as venues ("gentlemen's houses") and locations ("leaving Evesham for Pershore" REED PP).
Grumball, a clown mentioned by Armin in Foole upon Foole (REED PP).

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