The Vagabond King

The Vagabond King

The Vagabond King

The Vagabond King


The Vagabond King is an operetta in four acts based on Justin Huntly McCarthy’s 1901 romantic novel and play If I Were King. The story paints an episode in the life of 15th-century poet and thief François Villon, centering on his wooing of Katherine De Vaucelles (the cousin of King Louis XI), and relating how he becomes “king for a day” and defends France against the invading forces of the Duke of Burgundy.

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  • Genre: Adaptations (Literature), Period
  • Time Period: 15th Century
  • Cast Attributes: Expandable casting, Strong Role for Leading Man (Star Vehicle), Strong Role for Leading Woman (Star Vehicle)
  • Target Audience: Appropriate for all audiences


Brian Hooker

BRIAN HOOKER was an American poet, lyricist, librettist and translator. Born in New York City in 1880 to a prominent Connecticut family, Hooker attended Yale College and was published in The Century Magazine, The Forum, Hampton’s Magazine, Harper’s, McClure’s, Smart Set and t ...

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Russell Janney

RUSSELL JANNEY was a producer and author, best known for his first novel The Miracle of the Bells. He also produced and co-authored the 1925 musical The Vagabond King, with Brian Hooker and composer Rudolf Friml. Other productions include Marjolaine (1922) based on Pomander W ...

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W.H Post

WILLIAM H. POST was born in New York City on July 8, 1867. He was a writer and actor, best known for his work on Never Say Die (1912) and the operetta The Vagabond King (1930). Other credits include The Belle of Broadway (1902), Marjolaine (1922) and White Eagle (1927). He di ...

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Rudolf Friml

Justin Huntly McCarthy

Justin Huntly McCarthy was an Irish author and a nationalist politician. A Member of Parliament (MP) from 1884 to 1892, McCarthy also wrote various novels, translations, plays, poetical pieces, biographies and short histories. His play If I Were King was named the Best Play o ...

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