Frank/Nun/Ralph ... Amanda Noel Allen
Raymond/Benedic ... Jeffrey Chips
Coreb/Sir Arthur ... Brian Falbo
Fabell/Hildersham ... Sara Grace Landis
Host/Chamberlain ... Kimberly Maurice
Harry/Banks ... Rachel Quagliariello
Sir Richard/Sir John/
Prioress/Brian ... Paul Rycik
Prologue/Milliscent ... Melissa Tolner
Dorcas/Smug/Bilbo ... Victoria Rose Townsend
Sir Ralph/Sexton ... Daniel Trombley
Director .... Tony Tambasco
Associate Producer .... Meghann Strain
Musical Director .... Rachel Quagliariello
Prompter .... Jessica Malicki
From the title pages of the six printed quartos of The Merry Devil of Edmonton, we know it was performed at Shakespeare's Globe, and from records of the royal court, we know it was performed for the marriage of Princess Elizabeth. Thomas Middleton referred to Merry Devil in Black Book, and Ben Jonson called it "your deere delight" in the prologue to The Devil is an Ass, from which we can assume that Merry Devil was popular enough that these authors thought their audiences would recognize the name. By the standard of early 1600s London, The Merry Devil of Edmonton seems to have been an extremely popular play in the repertory of Shakespeare's company, The King's Men. Despite this, the play is shrouded in mystery.
No one knows who wrote The Merry Devil of Edmonton. Authorial practices of the time were sometimes collaborative in nature, and the surviving texts of Merry Devil bear some of the stamps of multiple authors contributing to the work. Merry Devil is short by early-modern standards; at about 1100 lines, it is some 600 lines shorter than The Comedy of Errors, Shakespeare's shortest comedy. The bibliographic scholar W. W. Greg said of Merry Devil: "if a rough author's draft... had been severely cut with a view to preparing an abridged version of the play... the resulting edition might have been something like what we find in the extant text." From the anonymous prose book The Life and Death of the Merry Devil of Edmonton, which tells a similar story as Merry Devil with some parts in greater detail, we can surmise that many of the scenes left out of the play called for the use of a balcony, which may suggest the quarto printings were derived from a copy of the text cut for an environment that might not have such a facility, such as a tour or court performance. Still, this is little more than guess work.
For everything we don't know about Merry Devil, it is still a familiar work. We know these lovers, these parents, and these clowns. Even though Bad Quarto's production may be the first in almost three centuries, it is instantly recognizable as a cousin of The Merry Wives of Windsor, A Night at the Opera, and The Forty Year Old Virgin.