Research Stream


Kathryn Roberts Parker

Kathryn Roberts Parker is a PhD candidate in English and Musicology at The University of Sydney. She received her BMus at Sydney Conservatorium of Music and a BA (Hons) in Performance Studies at The University of Sydney. Kathryn completed an MA in Shakespeare Studies at King’s College London in 2015, with the support of the John Monash Cultural Scholarship, a prestigious Australian award for leadership in the arts.

Kathryn is in the final stage of completion for her PhD project, Music and Festival Culture in Shakespearean Comedy. Supervised by Professor Liam Semler and Dr Alan Maddox, Kathryn has been researching the relationship between vernacular music culture and Saturnalian festivals as they are represented in early modern drama. In 2021, Kathryn will be undertaking a postdoctoral project on a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellowship at Newcastle University in the UK, titled A Performance History of Morris Dancing: Music and Musicians 1550–1700.

Kathryn has previously worked as a dramaturg and musician with ABC Radio National. She is a founder of Matriark Theatre, an independent children’s theatre company specialising in Commedia dell’Arte, puppetry and socially-engaged theatre in regional NSW.

Matriark Theatre


Music and Festival Culture in Shakespearean Comedy


Roberts Parker, K. ‘Wassailing and Festive Music in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night’. Australasian Drama Studies 76 (2020): 158–82.

2012: ‘Aural Sensibility and Performance of Shakespeare: Developing Modern Approaches to Hamlet and Macbeth’. Sydney Undergraduate Journal of Musicology (2012): 1‒17.


'Affective Song in Shakespeare’s Love’s Labor’s Lost’. Musicological Society of Australia 41st Annual Conference 'Through the Looking Glass’, Western Australia Academy of Performing Arts, Edith Cowan University, 6-9 December, 2019.

'Singing and Dancing into Summer with Sheep Shearing in Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale’. Musicological Society of Australia 42nd Annual Conference ‘Conflict -/- Collaboration’, Monash University, 5-7 December, 2019.                        

'Communal Singing and the Traditional Festivals of Robin Hood in Shakespeare’s As You Like It and Twelfth Night’. Australasian Theatre and Performance Studies (ADSA) Conference ‘Festivals and Performance’, University of Tasmania, 25-28 June, 2019.

'Teach Yourself to Play: lessons from sixteenth century printed music pedagogy in the age of the internet’. Shakespeare FuturEd Conference, The University of Sydney, 1-2 February, 2019.

‘Theatre, Emotions and Place: Observations at the Archaeological Site and Performance Space of the Rose Playhouse on London’s Bankside’, SHE conference ‘Emotions of Cultures/Cultures of Emotions: Comparative Perspectives’, UWA, 11–13 December 2017.

‘Shakespeare, Macbeth and the Supernatural’, Wyrd Vignettes Halloween performance with the Ninefold Ensemble, Don Bank Museum, North Sydney, 31 October 2017 and 13 November 2017.

‘“Then sing him home”: Togetherness and Political Subversion in Pastoral Entertainment and Robin Hood Balladry in Shakespeare’s As You Like It’, Sydney Medieval and Renaissance Group, Mosman, NSW, 9 August 2017.

‘“Then Sing Him Home”: Togetherness and Political Subversion in the Robin Hood Balladry of Shakespeare’s As You Like It’, ‘Powerful Emotions / Emotions and Power c.400–1850’, University of York, UK, 28–29 June 2017.

‘“Ballads on the Edge”: An Exploration of Vocal Music Embedded within Shakespeare’s Love’s Labour’s Lost’, Australia New Zealand Shakespeare Association Conference, University of Waikato, Hamilton, NZ, 16‒18 November 2016.

‘Editorial Transformations of an English Ballad in Shakespeare’s As You Like It’, British Shakespeare Association Conference, The University of Hull, UK, 8–11 September 2016.

‘“As You Have Whispered Faithfully”: An Examination of the Cultural History of the Ballads in Shakespeare’s As You Like It, Voices and Books Conference, Newcastle University, UK, 16‒18 July 2015.

‘“Modes of Aural Translation”: Navigating Soundscapes and Cultural Distance in Hamlet’, Early Modern Soundscapes Symposium, Bangor University, UK, 24‒25 April 2014.

‘“Rehearsal and Place”: Documenting the Effect of Historical Performance Venues and Preservation Strategies in Theatre Development at the Rose Theatre, London, UK’, Australian Universities Language and Literature Association Conference, The University of Queensland, 10‒12 July 2013.

‘“Cultural Distance and Aural Sensibility”’: Translating Elizabethan Experience in Hamlet’, Australia and New Zealand Medieval and Early Modern Studies Association Conference, Monash University, 11–16 February 2013.